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As Election Day nears, efforts to misinform and pressure voters rise

October 26, 2012   ·   Reuters-Deborah Charles   ·  Source Article

Groups like Election Protection are working to push back against attempts to prevent voters from exercising their rights at the polls.

Summary:  With just ten days left until Election Day that should come down to the wire, efforts to deceive and intimidate voters are ramping up. To counteract those efforts, groups like Election Protection are working to inform and empower voters to make sure their ballots are cast.

A number of tactics are being used to attempt voter suppression this election season. Florida, Virginia, and Indiana voters have received phone calls falsely informing them they could vote by phone instead of casting a ballot on Election Day. Billboards in Ohio and Wisconsin have popped up in minority and low-income neighborhoods that threaten prison time and large fines, a message many community leaders and voter rights’ groups are calling intimidation. And voting rights groups are also working to clear up concerns about voter ID laws, such as the one recently blocked by a judge in Pennsylvania.

"We've seen an uptick in deceptive and intimidating tactics designed to prevent eligible Americans from voting," said Eric Marshall of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, who manages the coalition Election Protection that has a telephone hot line (1-866-OUR-VOTE) that collects tips on alleged voter intimidation.

Made up of more than 100 local, state and national partners, this year's coalition will be the largest voter protection and education effort in the nation's history. The program will be staffed with help from over 10,000 volunteers with a focus on proving guidance, information, and any help to any voter.

Read the full story from Reuters