After two organizations with tea party ties called for voters to voluntarily show identification at the polls during the special primary for the 6th Worcester District House race on Tuesday and the general election on May 10, officials said they will take steps to protect would-be voters.
The district is composed of Southbridge, Charlton, East Brookfield and parts of Spencer and Oxford. Empower Massachusetts and Show ID to Vote launched an “integrity of the vote” campaign last week and said they are working with activists to observe the polls. The election is to resolve a tie in the November election between the incumbent, state Rep. Geraldo Alicea, D-Charlton, and Peter J. Durant, a Republican selectman from Spencer.
Since an initial report about the groups’ campaign, Town Clerk Madaline I. Daoust said residents have come to her expressing concern that people will be intimidated by the organizations, and that they would possibly be profiling voters. Southbridge has a growing Hispanic community. “We’re not going to allow our residents to be intimidated by any groups,” Town Manager Christopher Clark said.
“So we are going to take the necessary steps to make sure that voters feel comfortable — that they’re able to come in and vote.” Christen M. Varley, who started Empower Massachusetts last year and is its treasurer-director, suggested there was something amiss with the November election for the House seat, the recount in Southbridge, and the subsequent civil court case involving Mr. Alicea and Mr. Durant.
Full Article: http://www.telegram.com/article/20110410/NEWS/104109778/1003/NEWS03