Election 2020 FAQ: How do I report voter intimidation at the polls?

2020 Election

A polling place worker adjusts gloves as she tends to a reception table during the Florida primary election at the First United Methodist Church, Tuesday, March 17, 2020, in Jupiter, Fla. As Florida officials try to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, the state’s voters headed to the polls to cast ballots in the Democratic presidential primary. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

QUESTION: How do I report voter intimidation at the polls?

ANSWER: The ACLU said citizens can report voter intimidation a few different ways:

  • You can call the Election Protection Hotline at 1-866-OUR-VOTE or 1-888-VE-Y-VOTA;
  • By calling the U.S. Department of Justice Voting Rights Hotline at 1-800-253-3931;
  • Or you can try talking to your local and state officials, including poll workers, your county clerk, elections commissioner, elections supervisor; or your state board of elections.

Henrico County announced Monday they will have a citizen call line for residents to report incidents such as voter intimidation on Election Day. The line will be available from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 3, and can be reached at 804-501-5655.

Virginia State Law defines voter intimidation as behavior that is used to “hinder, intimidate, or interfere with any qualified voter so as to prevent the voter from casting a secret ballot.”

“[I]t is a criminal offense for private individuals to usurp the role of actual law enforcement, and it is accordingly unlawful to appear at the polls attempting to exercise roles that rightfully belong to law enforcement,” Attorney General Herring said in an announcement from September.

In addition, he added it is a Class 1 misdemeanor in Virginia to “falsely assume[] or exercise[] the functions, powers, duties, and privileges incident to the office of sheriff, police officer, marshal, or other peace officer, or any local, city, county, state, or federal law-enforcement officer.”

To read the full FAQ, click here.

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