This is a first hand account of working the 2020 election in Mecklenburg County of Charlotte, North Carolina.
I applied online to participate as a volunteer at local precinct, precinct 080. I was contacted by a Senior Quality & Training Specialist, who asked me to submit my resume, I never submitted my resume, nor responded to that particular email. A few weeks later I receive a call from a Chief Judge in Mecklenburg County. She explained to me that there were two spots available for her precinct and that she had exhausted her contacts to fill the two remaining positions. The two positions remaining were Equipment Manager and Republican Judge. I asked which one would give me the most experience and engagement in the election process, she replied the Republican Judge. I explained that I was not a registered Republican and instead registered as UNA. The Chief Judge expressed that this did not matter. I again asked if I was understanding correctly and she said that I did not have to be a Rep to the the Rep Judge. She even apologized that the “Rep” Judge was the only Judge position available…. I accepted the role.
Over the next month, I attended a two hour training session on October 7th, met the Democrat Judge, Chief Judge, and Equipment Manager for a walk through of the precinct on October 24th, and met the remaining poll workers on November 2nd to set-up the precinct.
On election day I arrived at precinct 080 at 5:40am. In no particular order, here is a list of events worth noting.
1. A poll observer entered the precinct approximately 6:20am. The Chief Judge told him to leave the building and wait outside until the polls open at 6:30am. She then turned and said how she hated the observers and they were nothing but a**holes.
2. The church employee in charge of the building was told that due to Covid-19 that he could not be anywhere inside the church building and would have to stay in the parking lot. ** This was an intentional LIE **. The Chief Judge mentioned during our walk through that she was planning to lie to the church employee to make sure that he would not be in the building.
3. Certain individuals were told by the Chief Judge that they were required to wear a mask to vote. In one particular incident an elderly woman had placed her mask over her mouth and was then instructed that the mask was required to cover the nose. ** This is FALSE **. During our training, it was made clear that poll workers could ONLY ask individuals to wear a mask, however could NOT require any individual to wear a mask, as this constitutes voter suppression.
4. The Chief Judge allowed boxes of pizza to enter the precinct and be shared with poll workers, observers and third party organization workers outside the precinct (who WERE allowed to enter the polling location, however church staff was NOT allowed to). This is in direct defiance of the Board of Elections Covid-19 protocol for polling locations. NO FOOD was to be shared by ANY STAFF or VOLUNTEERS, even with pizza being the example of what NOT to do.
***NOTE: I believe this important to note, because it shows how the Chief Judge was allowing Covid-19 to be the reason “certain” voters were required to wear a mask and “certain” individuals could not be inside the building because of Covid-19. However, boxes of pizza can be brought in and shared without concern and “certain”, non-approved third party workers, were allowed to enter the building.
5. ALL workers belong to DEM or UNA parties.
ALL Judges – UNA or DEM
ALL Poll Workers – UNA or DEM
ALL Observers – UNA or DEM
The following is an email exchange between myself and Carolyn Mints, Senior Quality & Training Specialist with Board of Elections – Mecklenburg County. The email exchange is from Monday, November 9th.
EMAIL 1 RESPONSE
EMAIL 2 RESPONSE
NOV. 3, 2020 – POLL WORKERS – PRECINCT 080 – MECKLENBURG COUNTY
6. Most of the morning, I was outside attending to the curbside voters. The last step of the curbside process was to take the written ballot and insert it into the tabulator to be counted. Late in the morning, around 11am, the Regional Precinct Coordinator arrived. She noticed that I was about to enter a ballot into the tabulator and pointed out to the Chief Judge that ONLY JUDGES were allowed to insert the curbside ballots into the tabulator. The Chief Judge explained that I was a Judge. The Regional Precinct Coordinator then mentioned that another Judge was required to be present when any Judge was inserting ballots into the tabulator. The Chief Judge lied to the Regional Precinct Coordinator and said that the 3 of us (the Judges) had been watching each other each time. I was unaware of this regulation and had been inserting ballots without any other Judge present. The remainder of the day neither Judge made themselves aware of the ballots I was inserting and I had to track one of them down each time I had to insert a ballot into the tabulator. The Chief Judge deliberately LIED.
7. Provisional ballots were cast the entire day and I, as Republican Judge, was never made aware of where they went after they were completed. I was not asked to confirm even ONE provisional ballot.
8. One man was told that, because he was not registered, that he could NOT vote. This is NOT True. He could have filled out a provisional ballot. I was only made aware of this situation after the fact. I was outside working curbside, when the outside observer asked “what did you say to get that man upset”? I explained that I was unaware of what he was talking about, I had been on curbside and not spoken to any voter inside the precinct. The observer went on to say the man wasn’t allowed to vote, but the observer didn’t know why. It wasn’t until after the man had left that the Chief Judge and I spoke to the observer. The Chief Judge said that the Provisional Transfer Assistant had turned the man away and should not have turned him away.
*** NOTE: On November 4th, I reached out to the observer to ask if he knew any contact that I could report a few of my concerns to. I mentioned a few of the concerns I had and he defended each one. He then noted how he was a DEM and to be clear, the only incident he reported was when I turned the voter away because the voter was not registered. The observer said I was the only man working and when the upset voter came out and described to him what had happen. The voter said that the man inside “with the Bible name” was an a**hole and wouldn’t let him vote. I then reminded the observer that I was NOT the only man working, that the Provisional Transfer Assistant was a MAN named Abdulah, and he was who the voter had spoke with. The DEM observer however, reported me, the REP Judge, as turning away a voter that I never spoke a single word to.
9. Just prior to the polls closing, the Chief Judge told me that if someone pulling into the parking lot, to go ahead and let them come in. POLLS CLOSE at 7:30pm in NC, not a few minutes later.
10. At the end of the night, the Chief Judge and the Equipment Manager printed out the results from the tabulator. The Chief Judge asked the poll workers if anyone would like to hear the results. She gathered everyone around and read out how Biden had beat Trump. The workers started cheering and then asked about Roy Cooper. The poll workers then cheered again. The Chief Judge went on to say how the bonds were passed which is “a really good thing, that’s a good thing.”
These are great concerns and I have shared these concerns with local and national media outlets.