The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division plans to send more than 500 staff members to 67 communities in 28 states to monitor the general election tomorrow, including in seven Connecticut towns.
\On Election Day, the Civil Rights Division will monitor the election on the ground in the following local communities:
- East Hartford
- New Britain
- West Hartford
State and local governments have primary responsibility for administering elections, but the Civil Rights Division is responsible for enforcing the federal voting rights laws.
“The bedrock of our democracy is the right to vote, and the Department of Justice works tirelessly to uphold that right not only on Election Day, but every day,” Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch said in a statement. “We enforce federal statutes related to voting through a range of activities – including filing our own litigation when the facts warrant, submitting statements of interest in private lawsuits to help explain our understanding of these laws, and providing guidance to election officials and the general public about what these laws mean and what they require.”
On Election Day, lawyers in the Civil Rights Division’s Voting Section will also staff a hotline.
The department will gather information on whether voters are subject to different voting qualifications or procedures on the basis of race, color or membership in a language minority group; whether jurisdictions are complying with the minority language provisions of the Voting Rights Act; and whether jurisdictions permit voters to receive assistance by a person of his or her choice if the voter is blind, has a disability or is unable to read or write.
They will also look into whether jurisdictions provide polling locations and voting systems allowing voters with disabilities to cast a private and independent ballot; whether jurisdictions comply with the voter registration list requirements of the National Voter Registration Act; and whether jurisdictions comply with the provisional ballot requirements of the Help America Vote Act.
More information about the Voting Rights Act and other federal voting rights laws is available on the Civil Rights Division’s website.
Complaints related to disruption at a polling place should always be reported immediately to local election officials, including officials in the polling place. Complaints related to violence, threats of violence or intimidation at a polling place should be reported immediately to local police authorities by calling 911.
The Connecticut Secretary of the State's Office will also staff a hotline for residents to report election fraud or voting rights abuses at 1-866-733-2463 or the State Elections Enforcement Commission at 860-256-2940.
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