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U.S. Attorney Watching For Voting Rights Violations

The U.S. attorney for Kansas, Barry Grissom, says his staff will be available Tuesday to respond to any reports of election fraud or voting rights violations. Grissom isn't expecting problems, but he says with close races on the ballot they need to be prepared for any issues. 

Election fraud or voting rights violations can include blatant things like physically intimidating or blocking someone from voting, but it can also be much more subtle than that. Grissom says voter suppression could be as simple as sending people to the wrong polling place or otherwise trying to confuse them. He says in close races, even a small number of votes can impact the outcome.

"Sometimes if somebody is sent to another place and they become exasperated or they've got to get back to work of they've got kids, they just may throw their hands up and say 'what the heck, it doesn't matter anyway,'" says Grissom. "Well, if you do that enough times, it does matter. So, if someone finds themselves in that position we certainly hope they'll reach out to us."

Grissom says anyone who witnesses or experiences fraud or voting rights violations should contact the Kansas U.S attorney's office (913-551-6730) or the FBI's Kansas City Field Office (1-855-527-2847).

State law says polls must be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, although local jurisdictions can extend that. In Johnson, Douglas and Shawnee Counties, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

As the Kansas News Service managing editor, I help our statewide team of reporters find the important issues and breaking news that impact people statewide. We refine our daily stories to illustrate the issues and events that affect the health, well-being and economic stability of the people of Kansas. Email me at skoranda@kcur.org.
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