Stories about someone with the surname Clinton potentially breaking the law aren’t exactly hard to come by these days, but they generally revolve around Hillary Clinton’s private bathroom closet server. The one making the rounds this week, however, has to do with her husband. In the middle of voting during a tight, heavily contested primary in Massachusetts, Bill was out and about stumping for his wife. Nothing unusual so far, since they had surrogates swarming the state right up until the polls closed. But the wrinkle in this tale comes from the fact that Bill was doing it inside of and immediately outside a polling station. And that’s against the law. (Boston Globe)
Former president Bill Clinton is drawing flak from people who say he spoke to a large crowd too close to a polling place in New Bedford, potentially preventing some residents from voting in Tuesday’s presidential primary.
Videos and photos show that Clinton was close to the entrance of the polling place at a building in Buttonwoood Park as he thanked people for voting — and for supporting his wife, Hillary, who is seeking the Democratic nomination.
Bill Clinton’s critics fumed and created an online petition calling for the “prosecution” and “arrest” of Clinton for allegedly violating state election laws. More than 26,000 people had signed the Change.org petition as of Wednesday morning.
Electioneering activities are not permitted inside of or within 150 feet of polling places while the voting is going on and it’s punishable by law. New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell (a Clinton supporter) was quick to point out that at no time did Bill go inside the building nor did he shut down the voting, as if that makes a difference. But at a different location that same day, Bill showed up inside a polling location, yucking it up with the volunteers and stumping for his wife.
Bill Clinton’s presence inside a polling location in Boston on Super Tuesday raised concerns about whether the former president violated state rules on election campaigning.
While stumping for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton entered a polling station at the Holy Name Parish School’s gymnasium in West Roxbury early Tuesday.
A video clip showing Bill Clinton shaking hands with election clerks at Holy Name, alongside Mayor Martin J. Walsh, had some people on Twitter questioning the former president’s appearance indoors.
“Aren’t there rules about electioneering at the polling location?” one person wrote on Twitter, after seeing the video.
“How is this legal?” a second person asked on social media.
This isn’t some obscure statute that anyone would be unaware of, particularly someone who has spent as much time on the campaign trail as Bill. The Big Dog clearly knows better unless he’s losing control of his faculties. This just seems like one more case which demonstrates that the Clintons plow through the world with a feeling that the rules simply don’t apply to them. With a last name like that you can pretty much get away with anything you like. (And to be honest, history has shown they’re pretty much correct about that.) But now it’s up to Massachusetts: do they plan to enforce their own laws? With video and hundreds of witnesses available, this should be a slam dunk case. But somebody would need to have the gall to actually request a warrant and go get him.
Odds of that happening? The Magic Eight Ball says, “unlikely.”