Monday, August 24, 2020

Trump's Illegal Threat of Law Enforcement at Polls

On Friday, President Donald Trump threatened to send law enforcement to watch the polls on election day. "We're going to have sheriffs, and we're going to have law enforcement, and we're going to have, hopefully, US attorneys, and we're going to have everybody and attorney generals (sic)," he brayed.

I can only speak to Pennsylvania, where the law is very clear. Unless he's there to vote, any police officer who is within 100' of a polling place is committing a crime, unless he's there to vote himself. Here's what the Elections Code says:

"Any police officer in commission, whether in uniform or in citizen's clothes, who shall be within one hundred (100) feet of a polling place during the conduct of any primary or election, except in the exercise of his privilege of voting or for the purpose of serving warrants, or in accordance with the provisions of the exception set forth in section 1207 of this act where the police station or headquarters is located in the same building or on the premises where the polling place is located or unless called upon to preserve the peace, as provided by this act, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding five hundred ($500) dollars, or to undergo an imprisonment of not more than one (1) year, or both, in the discretion of the court."

The only person who can ask police to preserve the peace is the Judge of Elections.

This is also contrary to federal law, which bans any federal official from summoning either troops or armed men to a polling place unless necessary to repel armed enemies of the U.S.

What Trump is doing is voter intimidation.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

What he wants to try is similar to
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballot_Security_Task_Force
"Armed members of the Task Force "were drawn from the ranks of off-duty county deputy sheriffs and local police," who "prominently displayed revolvers, two-way radios, and BSTF armbands."[6] BSTF patrols "challenged and questioned voters at the polls and blocked the way of some prospective voters" in predominantly African-American and Hispanic areas."

Anonymous said...

you can get this
https://www.texasobserver.org/above-the-law-pamela-elliott-sheriff/
"Ten minutes after the start of the meeting, all four of the executive committee members in Gallegos’ house were gabbing about the posse amassed outside. Then there was a loud knock at the door — Sheriff Elliott. “She came to the door in uniform and was about to come in, so I held the door and said, ‘May I help you?’” Gallegos says.

According to Gallegos, Elliott said she had a right to attend the meeting and that she’d received permission from the Texas attorney general to be there under the Open Meetings Act. “She held her boot in the door and I told her to have him call me — that if he said she could be there I’d let her in,” Gallegos says. “And nobody ever called me, of course.”

Anonymous said...

I do hear that there is a long list of attorneys ready to review this election. I am sure it is on both sides.
There should definitely be watchers available to watch everything at the post office and the actual counting. We will need a citizen army to police this election.

Anonymous said...

Trump isn't very good at being a politician like those who've been around for decades. That's why I voted for him.

Anonymous said...

I am not sure if you will consider it off topic but why was there no sanction when Santiago in Allentown was actively involved at the polls in her bid for election? This was blatant and really not reported as much of a concern. Your topic today reminded me to ask why nothing was done. She looks intimidating in some of the pictures.

Anonymous said...

So why is a constable at a poll and once a polling place was inside a township building that housed a police force?

Bernie O'Hare said...

If you read the post above, which actually quotes the law, it is allowed when a polling place is at a building that includes a police department. Also, the elections code specifically provides for a constable, although I have not had or needed one at my precinct ever.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"Trump isn't very good at being a politician like those who've been around for decades. That's why I voted for him."

There's a difference between being a nonpolitical and a thud who suppresses the vote. "Law and Order" Trump wants to intimidate voters, a crime.

Anonymous said...

No worries. I shall be in possession of my licensed, insured and legal firearm to ward off the dastardly demented democrats as I preform the act of saving the republic (not democracy) from a fate worse than Venezuela.

Anonymous said...

I suspect ANTIFA will attempt to disrupt voting with its usual chaos and arson and violence. And there's the conflict. Does ANTIFA represent voter intimidation, or does law enforcement protecting voters from ANTIFA intimidation represent intimidation?

Anonymous said...

Thud? You mean thug?

Anonymous said...

All this shit stirring by Trump is ultimately going to be self defeating.

A lot of people will just stay away from the polls, both Republicans and Democrats.

Most people see it for what it is, Trump getting backed into a corner, seeing awful #'s on public opinion of his job performance, and bleak forecasts for November.

Most Independents and moderate Republicans are uncomfortable with his constant distraction tactics and even more uncomfortable with his constant pandering to a base that contains a large element of angry, hate filled racists and a sizable core of others willing to look the other way about it.

He's going to get mauled in the popular vote no matter what. Pretty good chance he's going to have his ass kicked in via the Electoral College as well.

Either way - November-December are not going to be pretty and the one person who will be responsible for it will be Trump.

Anonymous said...

More worried about a Voter Registrar that goes on social media blasting a referendum she must make sure is handled fairly. The election Commission must investigate this incident in Northampton County

Anonymous said...

I'll be armed as I vote.
And I'm sure it'll be 101' away, not 10'.
Trump 2020

Anonymous said...

My concern is the chaos and damage Trump will cause in the almost 3 months he'll have left after he loses the election.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Trump isn't very good at being a politician like those who've been around for decades. That's why I voted for him.

August 24, 2020 at 6:26 AM

The appeal of such an attribute is that, ideally, it promotes honesty. But if what you honestly are is an asshole, then not so much.

Anonymous said...

11:08 Agree. I'm a moderated who never lined up behind trump. People are sick of him as a person but are willing to overlook the flawed personality. Dems are just not appealing to average Americans. I will not be surprised if trump is reelected as the Dems have a message that excites no one.

Anonymous said...

anon 12:34, that was on the Zirinski Facebook page where both she and Cozze trashed county council for their votes

Anonymous said...

The problems can also be before the election. trumpie will probably bomb something and play wag the dog.
trump has to win if he loses he is not worth anything to Putin so whatever hold he has on trump will come out.
Maybe Steele got the Au showers story right.
Not to mention his taxes are going to be a problem for him.

Anonymous said...

Trump isn't very good at being a politician like all those do nothing's that helped in selling America down the river!

Anonymous said...

Who would have thought that being president is so difficult?

Anonymous said...

Law enforcement at the polls would be voter intimidation but accuracy of the vote would most certainly be assured. Just because criminals and democrats don't like it doesn't mean its bad.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Law enforcement at the polls is not just bad. It's criminal.

Anonymous said...

It's criminal???

Tell me exactly what law would be broken?
I'm waiting.
You don't know, do you--typical democrat...



Dry your tears--four more years!

Anonymous said...

Will law enforcement be at the polls or in the area of the polls to prevent ANTIFA violence? I'd hate to think LEOs have to stand down for violence because it's election day. Everyone knows ANTIFA is going to cause violence. What do we do?

Bernie O'Hare said...

"t's criminal???

Tell me exactly what law would be broken?
I'm waiting.
You don't know, do you--typical democrat..."


I specifically quoted the law that would be broken.
It's called the Elections Code.
I specifically quote the penalty, too.

Typical idiot.

Anonymous said...

I don’t understand why or how the presence of a police officer is intimidating, In any setting, I find that comment ridiculous.. I like having p9lice wherever I am in either lone situations or in group situation. When I am outside my home and a police officer drives down my street , I stand tall and clap my hands so he knows I appreciate their ( his or her) service to me and my family.

The only time one should be afraid of the police is if they are scared because they are doing something wrong or illegal.

Bernie O'Hare said...

8:28, it is illegal. I quoted the law and the penalty. This is nothing new and has existed for decades.

Anonymous said...

@8:28 "I don’t understand why or how the presence of a police officer is intimidating..."

Because you are white, and enjoy the assumption that you're a good person, as opposed to being Black or Hispanic where that assumption is not nearly universal.

Not saying you do or don't think that way when you see a minority in a public place, but there are plenty of people who consciously or unconsciously immediately put their guard up and act differently.

Your personal experience with LEOs either directly or via family and friends, would be mostly positive where some sort of assistance was rendered in a fender bender or response to a problem you were having. At worst, maybe a traffic ticket or summons was issued for something. In general it probably hasn't been adversarial for most of your life.

Anonymous said...

Never have we seen such a corrupt and self serving president! Whatever pops into his head, he says!
It’s a sad day in America when it comes to this!
Trying to intimidate voters!
This is beginning to feel like a third world country!
We need to take back our Democracy!
Vote Biden!