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U.S. Attorney Watching KS for Voting Rights Violations

VOTE 11 6 12 SKA voting location in Lawrence in 2012. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)The U.S. attorney for Kansas, Barry Grissom, says he will have staff available on Election Day to respond to any reports of fraud or voting rights violations.

Grissom says violations can involve intimidating voters or simply trying to confuse them, by sending them to the wrong polling place or otherwise discouraging them from voting.

He doesn’t expect any violations, but he says they could be more likely with the state’s tight elections.


“When you’re talking about close elections, if you can have an impact on 1 or 2 percent of your voters, you can swing the election. So it’s very important if someone feels as if they’re being intimated or they’re being misled, then they need to call us,” says Grissom.

Grissom says anyone who witnesses fraud or voting rights violations should contact the Kansas U.S attorney’s office (913-551-6730) or the FBI’s Kansas City Field Office (1-855-527-2847).

State law says polls must be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, although local jurisdictions can extend that. In Johnson, Douglas and Shawnee Counties, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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(VERSION TWO)

The U.S. attorney for Kansas, Barry Grissom, says his staff will be available Tuesday to respond to any reports of election fraud or voting rights violations. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, Grissom isn’t expecting problems, but he says with close races on the ballot they need to be prepared for any issues.


(SCRIPT)

Election fraud or voting rights violations can include blatant things like physically intimidating or blocking someone from voting, but it can also be much more subtle than that. Grissom says voter suppression could be as simple as sending people to the wrong polling place or otherwise trying to confuse them.

He says in close races, even a small number of votes can impact the outcome.

“Sometimes if somebody is sent to another place and they become exasperated or they’ve got to get back to work of they’ve got kids, they just may throw their hands up and say 'what the heck, it doesn’t matter anyway.' Well, if you do that enough times, it does matter. So, if someone finds themselves in that position we certainly hope they’ll reach out to us.”

Grissom says anyone who witnesses or experiences fraud or voting rights violations should contact the Kansas U.S attorney’s office (913-551-6730) or the FBI’s Kansas City Field Office (1-855-527-2847).

State law says polls must be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, although local jurisdictions can extend that. In Johnson, Douglas and Shawnee Counties, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

 

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