Wednesday, October 15, 2008

What not to wear on election day

Did you know that in Minnesota there are laws against campaigning or "electioneering" within 100 feet of polling places. Each state boasts its own specific regulations and varying degrees of enforcement.

The majority of states use language prohibiting voters and poll workers from "distributing," "circulating," "posting," or "exhibiting" campaign materials within 10 to 200 feet of polling places. This is sometimes interpreted as including buttons, t-shirts, hats, and other political garb (often called "passive electioneering"), but is more often restricted to signs, posters, fliers, pamphlets, and the like.

At least 10 states -- Delaware, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Vermont -- explicitly prohibit the wearing of pins, buttons, stickers, labels, or other "political insignia."

Your place of polling will ask you to remove or cover up any campaign material on election day, so zip up, turn inside out, remove and stick in your purse any t-shirts, hats, buttons, tattoos, etc before going to vote on Nov 4th.

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