ABC27 Investigators look into voter concerns of constables at Pa. polling locations

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Long lines appeared to be the biggest complaint of voters on election day. There were a few reports of precincts opening late due to late poll workers and a few minor technical issues that were fixed quickly.

The Pa. Election Protection Coalition is a non-partisan group that sets up a toll-free hotline for voters to report problems.  The coalition is led by several groups including Common Cause Pennsylvania, ACLU-Pennsylvania, and Keystone Votes. As of 5:30 p.m., the coalition said it received 2,500 calls. The group says “most of the calls and activities are relatively normal for any election year.”

The coalition did take calls from several counties, including Cumberland, Dauphin, and Lehigh, regarding the presence of constables at precincts. According to the Pa. Election Protection Coalition, the voters found “the presence of constables intimidating because they were wearing bullet-proof jackets, possessing weapons in full display, or actually engaging with voters waiting to vote. The coalition flagged these issues to the Department of State (DOS).”

The ABC27 Investigators looked into these concerns.

Chad Saylor, Chief Clerk of Dauphin County, said Dauphin County does not assign constables to polling places.

Cumberland County did have constables at polling locations. According to a Cumberland County spokesperson, “Constables are required to be available to protect the peace at polling locations per the Pennsylvania Election Code.”

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