Despite threats and intimidation around the country, poll workers are ready for election day
“It doesn’t scare me, I think it causes everyone to be a little more careful,”
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Preparations are underway this evening by the Mecklenburg County board of elections ahead of election day. Giving the growing threats and intimidation to election workers across the country lately, WBTV talked to a veteran poll worker about the reason they keep coming back year after year.
Michael Dickerson, the Director of Elections for Mecklenburg County said, “I’ve got some 2,500 people out there, most of them are seasoned precinct officials that have been doing this years and years.”
Some of those veteran poll workers are found here at precinct 9, the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Dilworth. They spend most of Monday afternoon setting up for election day.
Read: N.C. election officials investigating over a dozen cases of intimidation, interference at polling sites
Mark Tully, Precinct 9′s Democratic Judge for Mecklenburg County Board of Elections said, “I’ve been working elections for about 20 years, going back to obviously the early 2000s.”
He is one of the three judges each precinct has to handle problems if they arise. They consist of a chief judge, a democrat judge and a republican judge.
Tully said, “that is the check and balance to ensure there’s no leaning one way or the other in a partisan manner.”
Tully takes the job seriously and says he comes back because of the voters.
“I come back every year because I think that the opportunity to vote is one of the basic rights that Americans have,” said Tully.
Despite the hostile political environment and threats seen across the country, Tully is not concerned.
“It doesn’t scare me, I think it causes everyone to be a little more careful,” said Tully.
While there have been some reports of voter intimidation and election interference, the Mecklenburg County Board of Election says there haven’t been any threats here.
“We’re in good shape here, we haven’t seen any of that stuff that you’ve been reading about throughout the country, so we have a good group of voters here in Mecklenburg County,” said Dickerson.
The county tells WBTV it’s in contact with law enforcement and it’s advising all voters to be courteous of poll workers. Meanwhile, Mark Tully has this message for potential voters.
“Come early, vote, and bring all of your friends, and your family,” said Tully.
Polls open Tuesday from 6:30 AM until 7:30 PM.
If you have an absentee ballot, it must be brought to the board of elections office before 5 PM or postmarked November 8th to be counted.
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