EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

November 5, 2012

Voter ID Law could mean long lines

State's new law may cause confusion, delays at polls


When a newspaper in the state published a story last week saying the law would not be in effect tomorrow, a town clerk sent an email to clerks around the state. The clerks were asked to tell newspapers the law was in effect.

In addition, the secretary of state and attorney general held a press conference Friday to clear up any confusion.

Opposition expected

Edwards and Scanlan said yesterday their offices are hearing rumors that some groups of people are going to quietly protest the new law, demanding to vote without showing an ID or filling out an affidavit.

“We expect there will be challenges under Voter ID,” Edwards said.

Pelletier has the same concerns, but some town clerks have said many residents told them they support the new law because it would prevent potential voter fraud.

“I think we are going to have some people who refuse to show anything,” Pelletier said.

That, of course, means even longer lines.

Forty people from the Attorney General’s Office will be out in force today, visiting polls throughout the state to ensure compliance with the Voter ID Law and make sure there are no other problems, Edwards said.

Newton Town Clerk/Tax Collector Mary-Jo McCullough said she is ready for the election, but some residents she’s encountered have been confused about voting.

“They think if you have registered your car, you are automatically registered to vote,” she said.

Town clerks were scrambling yesterday to prepare for today, setting up the polls, fielding phones calls, dealing with absentee ballots and getting ready for the onslaught of voters.

“It’s been crazy,” Salem Town Clerk Susan Wall said.

At Windham High School, Town Clerk Nicole Merrill and others were busy getting the polls ready in the gymnasium. That included making sure voters were informed about the new law.

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