Sunday, October 23, 2016

GOP Poll Watchers are needed for the Early Voting Period, which is already underway.

Email from a Republican friend:

GOP Poll Watchers are needed for the Early Voting Period, which is already underway.
Even a few hours of your time will be meaningful.
If you can help, please contact:
James B.

Donald Trump has raised the specter of a stolen election and encouraged his supporters to watch the polls. He has no training program for them, nor is he making a nationwide effort to have this done in an orderly fashion. One cannot just show up and observe the election.  One has to be an official poll worker, or an approved poll watcher to have access to the polling place. If you just show up you will be turned away.  You cannot hang around outside either, within a certain marked boundary.

I think it is healthy to have trained observers watching the election. I know some voter fraud does occur and suspect much more would occur if not for poll watchers.  I have worked as a Republican Poll watcher in the past but before doing so, I underwent several hours of training to know what I was permitted to do as a poll watcher and what I was not permitted to do and I learned the rules and regulations for conducting an election. I have also worked as a poll official, so that helped me being a poll watcher.

Even if the Trump organization, assigns poll watchers, if they don't know what they are watching for, they will unnecessarily create confusion and be counterproductive.  If poll watchers challenge people simply because they speak in broken English or have a heavy accent, that is intimidation.  That is not a legitimate challenge. If you want to watch the polls contact the people above or call the Republican Party headquarters and offer to be a poll watcher. Also, if you are a Democrat,I encourage you to contact your party headquarters to be a poll watcher.  Both parties need poll watchers and the watchers also need to be watched.

If you have never watched polls before, and there are no more training sessions available at this late date, then educate yourself and ask someone who is experienced to train you. Untrained observers serve no purpose.  I believe every person who is authorized to vote and wants to vote, should vote; and no one who is not authorized to vote should be allowed to vote.  Trained poll watchers, of both parties, can ensure honest elections.

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