Bill Clinton rubbed more than a few people the wrong way on Super Tuesday 2016. Former President Clinton reportedly spent a portion of March 1 visiting polling locations, reports the Inquisitr. The issues began when Bill Clinton went inside a polling station in Boston during the Massachusetts primary. The problem? Campaigning isn’t allowed within 150 feet of a polling location on election day in the state of Massachusetts.
“Certain activities are prohibited within the polling location and within 150 feet of the polling place. A person standing within 150 feet of a polling location, including observers in the polling location, may not: hold any campaign sign; hand any person literature intended to influence the voter’s action at the polls; wear any campaign buttons or identifying signage; solicit a person’s vote for or against a candidate or question on the ballot; or, distribute stickers.”
According to some, including Change.org petition creator Veronica Wolski of Chicago, and over 65,000 signatories of her petition, Bill Clinton should be arrested and prosecuted for his actions on Super Tuesday. Specifically, former President Bill Clinton went inside the Boston polling station, reports CNBC. While inside, Bill Clinton also reportedly spoke with poll workers and even had a moment for a photo-op with a woman at the Holy Name Parish School’s gymnasium in West Roxbury.
Ultimately, Hillary Clinton went on to win the Massachusetts primary, outperforming her Democratic rival Bernie Sanders by about 17,000 votes. Per the petition, Bill Clinton is accused of committing a “clear, knowing and egregious violation of the campaign laws to swing an election in a significant way.”
Election officials in the state have reportedly stated that former President Clinton didn’t break any laws, but that’s not enough for the petition creators and/or the supporters.
While there were multiple reports of Bill Clinton being sighted near and even inside polling locations, there have been no reports that former President Clinton asked voters to support his wife, Hillary Clinton, let alone that he tried to steer their votes in her direction. Nevertheless, the online petition makes the allegation that Bill was “electioneering within the boundary [of the polling location].”
The signatories of the petition to have Bill Clinton arrested and charged for violations of Massachusetts election laws are clearly no fan of the Clintons, at least for the most part. This much is made clear when the top voted comment on the Change.org profile read,
“I am 100 percent done with the cheating Clintons. They need to be stopped before they destroy our country. #BernieOrBust.”
For his part, Bill Clinton has remained mum on the petition, despite the amount of attention and number of signatures it has received. Rather than directly respond to the criticism of his visits to Massachusetts polling locations, Bill Clinton utilized a spokesman to address the issue indirectly. That spokesman addressed media queries to a report by WCVB, a local Boston news outlet. WCVB reported extensively on why Bill Clinton’s Super Tuesday actions were within the bounds of Massachusetts law.
Specifically, Bill Clinton didn’t violate the law in the state of Massachusetts for two primary reasons. First and foremost, no one was prevented from casting their vote because Bill Clinton was visiting Massachusetts polling locations. Secondly, former President Clinton did not distribute any materials in support of his wife’s presidential bid while within the legal boundaries of any polling location in the state.
“No one was prevented from voting. The city and voters were notified well in advance of the event.”
While the Change.org petition to have Bill Clinton arrested and charged with violating Massachusetts election law seems to be gaining a lot of support, it appears highly unlikely that the will of the signatories will ever result in any consequences for the former president as a result of his Super Tuesday foray.
Even so, it’s a very clear indication of the level of discontent in the 2016 presidential race. It’s highly uncommon to see the citizenry demand the arrest of a former president for simply visiting polling location. However, this is a historic election in more ways than one. Never before has the wife of a former commander-in-chief been so close to securing the presidential nomination from one of the “big two” political parties in the United States. It’s not surprising that Bill Clinton is pulling out all the stops to help Hillary claim victory; within the confines of the law, of course.
[Image Courtesy Of Win McNamee/Getty Images]