November 4th, 2008
03:47 PM ET
6 years ago

Man asked to leave Philly polling place

Voters checked in a Philadelphia polling place Tuesday.
Voters checked in a Philadelphia polling place Tuesday.

(CNN) - A man wearing what appeared to be a black outfit with a beret and holding a nightstick was asked by police to leave a polling location in Philadelphia Tuesday, according to Philadelphia County Board of Elections Supervisor, Bill Rubin.

Rubin says the man left without incident. He says another man wearing similar attire had a poll watcher certificate and was allowed to remain at the polling site at 1221 Fairmont Avenue.

A video posted on Youtube, by electionjournal.org, shows two men standing several feet in front of the entrance to Guild House West, the polling location for the 4th Division of Ward 14 in Philadelphia. The cameraman in the video asks a man with a nightstick who he's with and the man responds, "I'm security." The cameraman later says "I think it might be a little bit intimidating that you have a stick in your hand."

Rubin says local election rules state a person cannot be within 10 to 15 feet of the entrance to a polling place unless that person is voting, is a poll worker, or has a poll watcher certificate.

Rubin says anyone practicing voter intimidation outside that 10 to 15 foot perimeter could pose a public safety issue and would be handled by the police.

Cathie Abookire, a spokewoman for the Philadelphia District Attorney's office, says the office is not investigating the matter, calling it a "non-incident." Abookire says, "We have had no complaints from any voters that they have been intimidated."


Filed under: Pennsylvania • Voter Problems
soundoff (559 Responses)
  1. Independent but Leaning

    Clearly the Republicans are at it again. Right.

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  2. me and my two cents

    THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING!

    GET OUT THERE AND VOTE NOW!

    IF YOU DON'T VOTE, YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO COMPLAIN ABOUT WHAT HAPPENS!

    DO YOUR PATRIOTIC DUTY AND VOTE NOW!

    MAYBE THAT GENTLEMAN DRESSED IN BLACK WILL GO HOME AND CHANGE AND RETURN TO CAST HIS VOTE! WE'RE ALL ENTITLED!

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  3. Disgusted

    "THIS IS THE WAY BLACKS FUNCTION"??????

    Dear lord, I'm a white woman, and *I'M* offended. Go back into your hole, cretin. it's people like you voting that take this country down.....

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  4. zo

    Go to youtube and click on the most discussed videos and see the CNN story. The guy was taken away by the police... there was an interview with a voter who they tried to to intimdate.

    I'm a McCain voter but let's get real.. it's not like Obama told the Black Panters (or any similar gang) to do that.

    It's the idiots of our country that make us all look bad. KKK, Panthers, Guests on Jerry Springer, or any New England Patriots fan ;)

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  5. Tamara from NC

    What is the big deal? Blacks have voted for White politicians for years but now whites are running scared when there is a real possiblity that a black man will hold one of the highest political offices in the United States. Comne on people, we all need to unite and turn this country around....

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  6. hometowndemocrat

    47 yo man for McCain...

    Pretty tough words while your hiding behind your computer keyboard. Bet you wouldn't even come close to having the courage to say that to someones face.

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  7. ready for a change

    AND THIS IS WHY 72 YEAR OLD MEN HAVE 32 YEAR OLD WIVES
    DON'T MAKE IT A RACIST THINK PLEASE BECAUSE IT CAN GET UGLY REAL UGLY

    November 4, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  8. Mo'Kelly

    November 4th, 2008 4:16 pm ET

    The least educated voters will finally vote this year, and they will make an uneducated decision. God have mercy on this country.
    ___________

    Oh really? I thought the "least educated" voted Bush in...TWICE.

    God IS having mercy on this country...otherwise we would've been destroyed long ago.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  9. maria

    "47yo male for McCain" Your comment is about as ignorant as it gets. If I recall it was the KKK intimidating blacks way back when. I guess that's just how white people act? No. There are ignorant groups of people, like you, everywhere. No one felt intimidated, maybe because there was no intimidation going on.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  10. CNN is in bed with Obama

    How about 2 white men in sheets and hoods – how is this any different?

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  11. db.in.tx

    to:

    4sure November 4th, 2008 4:16 pm ET

    The least educated voters will finally vote this year, and they will make an uneducated decision. God have mercy on this country.

    i hear ya, too bad it took skin color to get them out to vote.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  12. Vote for your choice

    Everyone should practice their right to vote whoever they want. But, racist would still be a racist by making stupid comments about race.
    Exercise your right and vote whoever you think is right for the job.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  13. Go Sarah Go!

    Marcy, when you spell "Plumber" as "Plummer", then I know you're another ignorant democrat who didn't live through the Carter Democrat fiasco of 18 percent interest rates!

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  14. tired

    The last writer is how idiots function. Keep making us proud.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  15. Cynthia from California

    When the media neglects to mention the race of the person- that means it was a WHITE person. If they had been BLACK men, that would've been stated.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  16. fran the bricklayer

    I sympathize with joe the plumber. For a working man/women its harder to keep up with taxes. Especially when a gallon of milk cost more then a gallon of gas. American people are always complaining about the cost of luxuries in life rather then the true nessecities. With food prices up how can an out of work family pay for nessecities that have doubled in two years when their pay has remained stagnent? the taxes can wiat! Besides $1200 in back taxes and an $1100 hospital bill left unpaid are small problems compared to the debt aquired by the average American as of late.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. Debbie

    RE: Bruce's quote:
    Prejudice and racism exists all over the USA, not just in the South. There is prejudice against all races and sexes. If we do not educated our children about this problem it will always exist. Yes I do live in the south, and yes I am sure there is a chapter of the KKK around somewhere, but that does not mean that I am, or everyone in the south, is a member of this awful group.

    Bruce wrote:
    " November 4th, 2008 3:56 pm ET
    Well at least they are out in the openand have been handled…not like those in white sheets in south that hide and intimadate ,,,yes the Klan still exists in the south,,,and intimadates…."

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. Jason

    "They know no better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

    With this statement, it seems pretty obvious as to "who know no's" better!

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  19. Kyle

    Almost time for us to blast Palin back to to Alaska!

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  20. manda

    just because you vote mcain doesn't make you racist. most of the people voting today, have never botherd to vote, and are only doing it today, to vote for "the black man"

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  21. Leon

    Come on people, no matter who you are voting for or what race you are these comments sound like they are coming out of you azzes.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  22. Legal Voter Plano, TX

    I don't care if Satan himself was at the door of the polling place-I will cast my vote.

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  23. VETERAN FOR OBAMA

    a 47yr old is very ignorant, there is no HOPE for you old man.
    Go back to your KKK roots !

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  24. Average Joe

    Renita writes: Shame on any racist casting a vote against a black man for president ... I wonder how you feel about those few million who will vote for Obama based soley on the basis that he IS a black man?

    November 4, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  25. bill

    I voted today , at my kids elementary school Gym. As in past elections there were "poll watchers" that sat with the check in folks to make sure all voters were on the roles. OK. But the difference this year is that there was another democratic poll watcher, a young man that was pacing the line for the machines eyeballing everyone at the distance of about a foot. I asked him what he was doing and he said just making sure everythings done right.

    Hey Dems, if you win congrats, but now that the evil Bush is gone, open your eyes. Intimidation, depressing opposing views are things I know most of you dont agree with, dont allow it to be a tool and turn a blind eye by giving your party over to the extreme likes of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid.

    Lets agree there are certain limits all Americans believe make up the core of our noation, and they are not open for negotiationin whatever "fundamental change" Barack wishes to sweep in.

    Besides Iraq and regulation reform for businesses ot prevent fraud waste and abuse. What is so broken about this countries system now that Bush is gone?

    You can not unite or heal form the extreme. As the ruling Party, , we all expect some swing left, that is fine. But we have always been a nation that governs "between the 40s " and most still identify themselves as at least somewhat conservative. Do not allow extremists to define your party, demand they stay tethered to the basic truths of this country.

    Free speech, loyal opposition, self reliance and a govt working for the people, not a people working for the govt.

    God Bless Us all

    November 4, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
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