Pa. bills on poll watchers, earlier presidential primary advance

“There’s no reason to have election observers unless they can be in plain sight and see clearly what’s happening,” Franklin County Republican Assemblyman Paul Schemel said. Rep. Eric Nelson, R-Westmoreland, called the bill “a clear opportunity to give voters more confidence and belief that we are achieving electoral integrity.”

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s spokeswoman said he was strongly opposed to the poll observer law, calling it an attempt by Mastriano to encourage voter intimidation.

“Republicans should focus their efforts on electoral reform measures that ensure voters can freely and safely exercise their voting rights,” said Wolf’s press secretary Beth Rementer.

Rep. Joe Webster, D-Montgomery, called the proposal “an atrocity of a bill” that fuels erroneous suspicions and suspicions about the state election.

“What’s really happening with bills like this is that we intimidate enough poll workers that they won’t be there,” Webster said.

Conklin warned the bill is “looking for trouble” and may require additional surveillance by law enforcement in all constituencies.

Grove said that although the bill would allow candidates to have three poll watchers at polling stations, in reality “you’re lucky to get one.”

“What this bill does is allow the checks and balances provisions to continue within our elections, which date back to 1937,” Grove said, updated for modern needs.

The party line vote in favor of promoting the measure was 14-10.

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