November 03, 2020
Philadelphia's Election Task Force responded to 68 complaints of reported violations at polling places Tuesday.
The task force, created by the District Attorney's Office, had peacefully resolved all but one of them by the end of the night, according to the D.A.'s Office.
Most of the complaints were related to allegations of interference or electioneering. The other allegations included construction blocking the entrance to a polling location.
Task force prosecutors resolved complaints by phone or by investigating the incidents at polling places. Several follow-up investigations will need to be carried out.
Some allegations were determined to be unfounded.
The Election Task Force, which is headed by District Attorney Larry Krasner, believed the unfounded complaints could be attributed to "misinformation being shared on social media."
The D.A.'s Office tweeted about one of the incidents – a reported violation at a polling place in Northeast Philadelphia – on Tuesday morning. The allegation arose over social media when a Twitter user posted a picture of the outside of one Philly polling place.
Members of our Election Task Force have investigated this allegation. This polling place is located in an interior room and the sign in question is further than 10 feet from it. This tweet is deliberately deceptive. #PhillyVotes #Election2020 https://t.co/szKgxoigVm— Philadelphia DAO (@philadao) November 3, 2020
"Members of our Election Task Force have investigated this allegation," the office said in a tweet. "This polling place is located in an interior room and the sign in question is further than 10 feet from it. This tweet is deliberately deceptive."
The photo regarded a violation of campaign signage rules. A Twitter user alleged that signs appeared to be posted within 10 feet of the polling place, which is illegal under Pennsylvania's Election Code.
The D.A.'s Office ultimately determined this allegation of a polling place violation to be untrue.
Philly's Election Task Force was created ahead of Election Day to respond to complaints of voter intimidation, interference or other activities that might disrupt voting. It employed more than 90 workers to investigate these complaints.
Lines of voters were spotted across Philadelphia and in its neighboring counties Tuesday. Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that was expected to complicate voting, officials predicted a healthy turnout of in-person voting in the battleground state.
Turnout at polling places added to more than 2.5 million ballots returned by Pennsylvania voters in the 2020 election. The number of residents using vote-by-mail was unprecedented, and officials have stated it could cause delayed results in vote-counting.