Reports of voting irregularities in the key battleground states of Pennsylvania and North Carolina cast an early pall over Election Day while Republican hopeful Donald Trump already filed a lawsuit over a voting dispute in Nevada.
In Philadelphia, Democrat Party bosses were reportedly booting GOP election monitors from minority-laden precincts.
Joseph Defelice, Pennsylvania GOP chairman, says Democrats on the polling boards across Philadelphia are banning Republican poll watchers from entering the poll sites.
Chairman Defelice told The Daily Caller, “They’re just not letting them inside. They’re either poll watchers or minority inspectors. Minority inspectors are court appointed whereas poll watchers are mandated through the city to be inside that polling place.”
“They’re saying, ‘We don’t want you here. We don’t have Republicans in here. We’re full already. I don’t know what that piece of paper is.’ This happened in 2012. We made a big issue out of this.”
Obama sends DOJ staffers to 28 states sniffing for ‘voter intimidation’
More than 500 Justice Department staffers will man polling locations across 28 states Tuesday, in anticipation of voting irregularities and incidents of voter intimidation, the New York Post reports.
Department officials say personnel will be sent to 67 jurisdictions to watch for potential civil rights violations, amid a slew of threats from “white nationalists and alt-right vigilantes” to monitor polling sites on Election Day.
Among the states receiving federal monitors are those that have changed their voting rights laws since the last presidential election, including North Carolina.
Machines changing votes from Trump to Clinton in Pittsburgh
Election judges in Clinton Township, in Butler County, Pennsylvania, confirmed there were issues with two of their eight automated voting machines. Most of the issues came when people tried to vote straight-party ticket, CBS Pittsburgh reports.
However, other said they specifically wanted to vote for Republican Donald Trump only to see their vote switched before their eyes to Democrat Hillary Clinton.
“I went back, pressed Trump again. Three times I did this, so then I called one of the women that were working the polls over. And she said you must be doing it wrong. She did it three times and it defaulted to Hillary every time,” Bobbie Lee Hawranko told CBS Pittsburgh.
Officials have recalibrated the machines and are confident that the problem has been resolved.
More hanky panky in Philly
Election workers in Philadelphia were caught on video handing out instructions to “Press 1” for Hillary at the polling place. See video below:
Machines in Lebanon County, Pa., flip votes to Clinton
A problem with the calibration of electronic voting machines in Lebanon County has caused 5-6 machines to represent straight Republican tickets as straight Democratic tickets, said Michael Anderson, director of the Lebanon County Bureau of Elections, the Lebanon Daily News reported.
In these cases, the voter attempted to vote for the full Republican ticket, but noticed in the review screen that the vote was going to a straight Democratic ticket instead, Anderson said. They alerted their poll workers, who alerted the Bureau of Elections.
Machines malfunction in battleground states of N.C., Ohio
Voting machines are malfunctioning in some parts of Ohio, New York, Texas and other states, according to local media reports, the Hill reported.
About six hours after polls opened on Tuesday, voters have reported malfunctioning machines in multiple locations.
Most reports have come from New York, Illinois, North Carolina, Kentucky, Texas and Ohio, according to Electionland, a nonprofit project in partnership with ProPublica.
Electionland reported that every location citing problems Tuesday was still able to collect votes but had to switch to paper ballots.
Machines had also shut down in at least two Connecticut towns, according to NBC Connecticut. Chris Calvert, who tried to vote in Philadelphia, also tweeted that both voting machines were broken at his location, according to USA Today.
“No one can vote in our district today. Hundreds of angry voters,” he wrote on Twitter.
Louisiana voting machine logs ghost votes
A voting machine in Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana, reportedly counted votes at a polling site before any residents had even voted on the machine. Breitbart reported that resident Brandon Allen filmed what he reported were votes being counted on a machine that had not been used yet by residents.
Democrats seek to extend voting hours in Durham, NC
Durham County spokeswoman Briana Khan says the county board sought permission Tuesday from the State Board of Elections to allow voting to continue until 9 p.m. in all 57 precincts do to problems that caused long waits in line to vote. Khan told McClatchy Newspapers the state board has demanded evidence that the problems affected all the precincts so the county has called in 60 additional employees to put together that information. The State Board has not responded to an email from The Associated Press requesting comment on the situation.
The Southern Coalition for Social Justice and other groups also asked the state board to extend voting hours in Durham County after a computer problem resulted in elections officials relying on a paper check-in process. That resulted in at least one precinct running out of authorization-to-vote forms.
Trump volunteers harassed by Clinton supporters in Nev.
Volunteers canvassing and dropping off literature at houses Monday for Nevada Republican Senate candidate Rep. Joe Heck were followed by supporters of Hillary Clinton, who then subsequently pulled down the literature, a source within the Nevada Republican Party told The Daily Caller.
“In Reno, Nevada, two volunteers for the Heck campaign were out canvassing and dropping off Joe Heck for Senate literature when they noticed they were being followed by Hillary Clinton campaign workers. The staffers following them were wearing HRC buttons and HRC stickers. Beyond following them, the HRC workers began going up to houses and illegally removing Heck literature from the doors,” the Nevada GOP source said. “When the Heck volunteers noticed this going on, they stopped to take pictures of the illegal action.”
Trump files lawsuit in Nevada
Meanwhile, CNN reports that Trump lawyers have filed a lawsuit in Nevada state court, laying the groundwork for a potential challenge to results in Clark County, which is home to the Democratic stronghold of Las Vegas. This is the same county where irregularities were reported in 2010 that some Republicans say led to the close re-election of Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev.
Trump is suing Joe P. Gloria, the Clark County registrar of voters, over a decision they allege he made to keep polling locations open two hours beyond the designated closing time. Trump alleges the county was working in tandem with Democratic activists, but the judge would have none of it and refused to grant an order to halt the extended hours, Law News reports.
Georgia voter for Trump gets rejected
A Georgia voter for Donald Trump was nearly prevented from casting his ballot because of an alleged computer glitch.
Todd Saine told TMZ he was checking in to his polling place at Columbus Technical College Tuesday morning when the polling staff told him he already voted, and couldn’t cast another vote.
Saine said he was forced to wait in line with many others who had the same problem. Eventually, a supervisor for the Columbus County election board came to the polling place to sort out the mess.
Poll workers fired in Florida
Two temporary Broward County election workers were fired Tuesday after two party representatives got into a dispute at a Pompano Beach precinct, USA Today reported.
The two part-time workers were terminated for violating professional standards when they responded to a disagreement between two poll watchers representing the Democratic and Republican parties, said Tonya Edwards, a Broward County Supervisor of Elections spokeswoman.
“Since I wasn’t there, all I can say is that they lacked the professionalism we maintain in our standards,” Edwards told USA Today. “But voting was not disrupted.”
South Carolina voter turned away at polls
Chad Charles, of Greenwood, South Carolina, posted a note on Facebook, saying he had been standing in line to vote at the Greenwood County Courthouse since 6:30 a.m. He was number 14 in line.
When his turn came to vote, he was informed that he had already voted by absentee ballot. “Now I have to go to the courthouse and dispute this in order to vote,” he told Dennis Michael Lynch.