No Reports of Fraud or Intimidation at Polling Places
by David C. Barnett
Predictions of voting fraud and intimidation at the polls were voiced nationally in the days leading up to the election, but so far in Cuyahoga County, the process has gone smoothly with only a few glitches.
One concern was the potential of partisan observers intimidating voters, but Clevelander Adrian Halcomb says he saw no evidence of that.
"Not at all," he says. "It was pretty much a normal voting experience; never felt any pressure or coercion or anything of that type."
In a mid-day news conference, Cuyahoga County Elections Board Director Pat McDonald said both parties have credentialed poll observers who are watching for irregularities. A bigger concern this election was the potential for self-appointed monitors who back Donald Trump having a chilling effect on voters. McDonald said he’s seen no reports of such observers.
"The only issue I had," he said, "was this morning in Westlake, where a Trump supporter, in their gear, went into a polling location prior to us opening and they wouldn't leave."
But, McDonald indicated that Trump's charges about the potential for a "rigged election" did have an effect on today's procedures. There will be a beefed-up security presence tonight by Homeland Security, the FBI, and the Sheriff's department at the warehouse where the ballots are tabulated. McDonald described the morning turnout as "robust" and predicted a 67% participation by registered voters, by the end of the day.