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Who to contact if you suspect election fraud or voting rights abuses

East Idaho Eats

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BOISE — As thousands of people across the Gem State gather to vote today, there are systems in place to help prevent election fraud and voting rights abuses.

In Idaho, U.S. Attorney Bart M. Davis announced three assistant United States attorneys who are serving as election officers in Idaho while the polls are open. AUSA Jack Haycock, Ray Patricco and Traci Whelan are serving in Pocatello, Boise and Coeur d’Alene respectively and are are responsible for overseeing the Idaho’s handling of complaints of election fraud and voting rights abuses.

“Every citizen must be able to vote without interference or discrimination and to have their vote properly counted,” Davis said in a news release. “The Department of Justice will act promptly and aggressively to protect the integrity of the election process.”

If you suspect fraud or problems you can direct complaints to the AUSAs while the polls are open. The attorneys can be reached by the public at the following phone numbers:

  • (208) 251-0589 in Pocatello for AUSA Jack Haycock;
  • (208) 334-9118 in Boise for AUSA Ray Patricco;
  • (208) 676-7344 in Coeur d’Alene for AUSA traci Whelan.

Federal law protects against such crimes as intimidating or bribing voters, buying and selling votes, impersonating voters, altering vote tallies, stuffing ballot boxes, and marking ballots for voters against their wishes or without their input. It also contains special protections for the rights of voters, and provides that they can vote free from acts that intimidate or harass them.

For example, actions of persons designed to interrupt or intimidate voters at polling places by questioning or challenging them, or by photographing or videotaping them, under the pretext that these are actions to uncover illegal voting may violate federal voting rights law. Further, federal law protects the right of voters to mark their own ballot or to be assisted by a person of their choice (where voters need assistance because of disability or illiteracy).

Additionally, the FBI will have Special Agents available in each field office and resident agency throughout the country to receive allegations of election fraud and other election abuses on Election Day. For matters in eastern and southern Idaho, FBI agents in Boise can be reached by the public at (208) 344-7843 and for matters in northern Idaho, FBI agents in Coeur d’Alene can be reached by the public at (208) 664-5128.

After Election Day, complaints about possible violations of the federal voting rights laws can be made directly to the District of Idaho Civil Chief, AUSA Nicholas Woychick at (208) 334-9120 or the Civil Rights Division’s Voting Section in Washington, D.C. by phone at 1 (800) 253-3931 or (202) 307-2767, by fax at (202) 307-3961, by email to voting.section@usdoj.gov or by complaint form at justice.gov/crt/complaint/votintake.

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