MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - The U.S. Justice Department is keeping an eye on some of the voting in Tuesday’s Wisconsin fall primaries.
Civil rights personnel planned to monitor polling places in Milwaukee to watch for discrimination, harassment, and intimidation.
The state Government Accountability Board has sent a warning to partisan poll watchers not to interfere. During the busy recall elections this year, groups like the American Civil Liberties’ Union complained that poll watchers improperly spoke to the voters.
Legally, the only people they can talk to is the polling place’s chief inspector. Reid Magney of the Accountability Board said interference by poll watchers has become more frequent and intimidating. And the Board told poll workers they can call police if necessary.
Meanwhile, the state says it’s been educating poll workers on the recent changes in voting laws, so fewer violations take place Tuesday.
Voters do not have to show ID’s at the polls – but they must sign poll books, and new voters must show only specified documents to prove their residency. They must live in their present locations for 28 days instead of the previous 10.
Also, officials remind voters they can only choose candidates from one party in Tuesday’s primary.
The polls opened at 7 a.m., and will close at 8 p.m. Voters are choosing party nominees for the U.S. Senate, Congress, the state Legislature, and a number of county offices.