Politics

90,000 People Sign A Petition To Arrest Bill Clinton

| by Kathryn Schroeder
Former President Bill ClintonFormer President Bill Clinton

More than 90,000 people want former President Bill Clinton arrested for allegedly violating Massachusetts election laws.

The Change.org petition alleges Mr. Clinton campaigned for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, within 150 feet of a polling station, which is against the law in Massachusetts.

“This is a call for the immediate arrest of President Bill Clinton for clear, knowing and egregious violation of the campaign laws to swing an election in a significant way … Bill Clinton does not vote in Massachusetts, and would have no other business in a polling station on election day besides campaigning for his wife,” the petition states.

Mr. Clinton entered a polling station at the Holy Name Parish School’s gymnasium in West Roxbury on March 1, known as Super Tuesday, with Mayor Martin J. Walsh, where he stopped at a bake sale, and took a photo with one woman, The New York Times notes from press pool reports.

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“As long as we’re not violating any election laws,” Mr. Clinton said to the woman who asked for a photo, according to the pool report.

“We’re going to get this for her,” one female poll worker told Mr. Clinton, presumably referring to his wife’s campaign for president.

A video of Mr. Clinton shaking hands with election clerks at the church was posted to Twitter by WCVB news reporter Sera Congi and it elicited a slew of comments from users on the legality of the situation.

Mr. Clinton also reportedly went to a library polling station in Newton, Massachusetts, the same day.

“We had to remind everybody what the rules are, that there is no campaigning within 150 feet of the voting booths because people are entitled to their privacy,” William F. Galvin, the Massachusetts secretary of state, said in an interview with The New York Times. “And it’s not just him but his media entourage.”

Galvin reportedly called ahead to Mr. Clinton's next stop in New Bedford to remind poll workers of the rules.

“He can go in, but he can’t approach voters,” Galvin said. “We just took the extra precaution of telling them because this is not a usual occurrence. You don’t usually get a president doing this.”

The state of Massachusetts says Mr. Clinton did not violate any laws.

"No one was prevented from voting," Brian McNiff, spokesman for Galvin, told WCVB about the New Bedford event. "The city and voters were notified well in advance of the event."

McNiff added that no laws were broken because Mr. Clinton did not hand out flyers or voting materials for Mrs. Clinton while inside the polling places.

The more than 80,000 people who have signed the Change.org petition clearly disagree and want Mr. Clinton arrested for his alleged felony.

The petition has sparked a second one to be created on the same site, which asks that all of the delegates, including super delegates, Mrs. Clinton was awarded from the Massachusetts primary be forfeited to her opponent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont because of Mr. Clinton's alleged illegal actions. More than 17,000 people had supported the petition by March 3.

Sources: Change.org (2), The New York Times, Sera Congi/Twitter, WCVB / Photo credit: WCVB

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