Edith Knight was convicted of a misdemeanor and accordingly got off with a minimal fine and no jail time. The magnitude of her crime did not justify jail time, nor did anyone ever suggest that would have been appropriate. However, electioneering is illegal. It compromises the integrity of the voting process, and allowing it to persist unchecked undermines the basic tenets of democracy.
While Ms. Knight’s stubborn lack of remorse remains troubling, my hope would be that some lessons learned could provide a positive outcome.
Candidates for elected office need to provide detailed information and training for their workers, whether they be volunteers or paid campaign staff. Special emphasis should be placed on poll watchers. It’s irresponsible and inconsiderate to place blame on others for mistakes that emanate from a loose organization, or worse, within a political campaign. See: http://bit.ly/2s5f9ql.
It was good to see that the clerk-recorder attended a portion of the trial. Hopefully, what he heard informs some perspective on the functionality of polling places that can be applied countywide in future elections.
Cheri Roe, Creston