Ballot Access and Voting Integrity Initiative Election Officer Appointed to Oversee Election Day Program
|U.S. Attorney’s Office October 26, 2010|
United States Attorney Stephen R. Wigginton announced today that Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) Kevin Burke will lead the efforts of his office in connection with the Justice Department’s nationwide Election Day Program for the upcoming November 2, 2010 general elections. AUSA Burke has been appointed to serve as the District Election Officer (DEO) for the Southern District of Illinois, and in that capacity is responsible for overseeing the District’s handling of complaints of election fraud and voting rights abuses in consultation with Justice Department Headquarters in Washington.
United States Attorney Wigginton said, “Every citizen must be able to vote without interference or discrimination and to have that vote counted without it being stolen because of fraud. The Department of Justice will act promptly and aggressively to protect the integrity of the election process. The effectiveness of our Election Day Program depends in large part on the watchfulness and cooperation of the American electorate. It is imperative that those who have specific information about discrimination or election fraud make that information available immediately to my office, the FBI, or the Civil Rights Division.”
Eight years ago, former AttorneyGeneral Ashcroft established a Department-wide Ballot Access and Voting Integrity Initiative. The goals of this ongoing Initiative are to increase the Department’s ability to deter election fraud and discrimination at the polls, and to prosecute these offenses whenever and wherever they occur. The Department’s long-standing Election Day Program furthers these goals, and also seeks to ensure public confidence in the integrity of the election process by providing local points of contact within the Department for the public to report possible election fraud and voting rights violations while the polls are open on election day.
The franchise is the cornerstone of American democracy. We all must ensure that those who are entitled to the franchise exercise it if they choose, and that those who seek to corrupt it are brought to justice. In order to respond to complaints of election fraud or voting rights abuses on November 2, 2010, and to ensure that such complaints are directed to the appropriate authorities, United States Attorney Wigginton stated that Assistant United States Attorney/DEO Burke will be on duty in this district while the polls are open. He can be reached by the public at the following telephone numbers; 618-628-3700, 618-482-9361 and 618-977-3332.
In addition, the FBI will have special agents available in each field office and resident agency throughout the country to receive allegations of election fraud and other election abuses on election day. The FBI can be reached by the public in Fairview Heights at 618-397-4401 and in Marion at 618-997-6847.
Complaints about ballot access problems or discrimination can also be made directly to the Civil Rights Division’s Voting Section in Washington, D.C., at 1-800-253-3931 or 202-307-2767.