Philly Republican leader says GOP inspectors barred from polls

 Philadelphia GOP leader Joe DeFelice works the phones on Election Day, Nov. 8. (NewsWorks file photo)

Philadelphia GOP leader Joe DeFelice works the phones on Election Day, Nov. 8. (NewsWorks file photo)

Joe DeFelice, executive director of the Philadelphia Republican Party says GOP voting inspectors are being barred from polling places.

DeFelice says some 40 minority party election inspectors were turned away at the polling places.

“These are people who live in this division. They’re not from Western Pennsylvania, they’re not from other counties, they’re from that division and they’re being thrown out of polling places,” DeFelice said. “The problem is we don’t know what the Democrats are trying to hide, number one, but number two, this person is a voter in that division, that isn’t going to come back and vote. So clearly their vote is being disenfranchised and suppressed.”

DeFelice says one of his people had his “elections inspector certificate” confiscated and then told to stand outside the polling place.

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

He says they are talking to their attorneys and the U.S. Justice Department.

Andrew Wellbrock of the Election Day Fraud Task Force says the complaints are not surprising.

“It’s typical in every election cycle to get a couple of complaints in the morning about minority inspectors not being seated appropriately. Those calls are usually resolved by 7:30 – 8:30 in the morning,” Wellbrock said. “There were some complaints about minority inspectors not being seated on the Philly GOP account, but noone has called our office since 8:00 this morning.”

Philadelphia DA Seth Williams says by 2 p.m. there were about 68 election complaints.

“We have not received any founded complaints of voter intimidation in the city of Philadelphia, no arrests have been made,” Williams said.

The Philly hotline got more calls this year than in 2012 or 2008.

WHYY’s Tom MacDonald contributed to this report.

WHYY is your source for fact-based, in-depth journalism and information. As a nonprofit organization, we rely on financial support from readers like you. Please give today.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal