Bill Clinton’s appearance at a polling station has irked supporters of Bernie Sanders, and an online petition to have Clinton arrested under campaign laws has been signed by more than 80,000 people.
The drive began after Clinton appeared at a polling station in the city of New Bedford in Massachusetts, one of 11 states voting in the Democratic Party contest on Super Tuesday. Video clips posted online show him greeting polling workers, and a large security and media presence. Massachusetts law forbids campaigning activity within 150 feet of voting booths. Reports indicated that Clinton had also made a similar visit to a polling place in Boston.
An online petition to have the former president arrested was picking up steam on Thursday, with more than 80,000 signatures.
Hillary Clinton just eked out a win in Massachusetts with 50.1% of the vote to 48.7% for Sanders. New Bedford went for Clinton by a larger margin (about 54%), but not one hugely out of line with results in surrounding areas. So it’s difficult – in fact probably impossible – to tell whether the former president’s appearance had much impact on the vote.
But in a campaign that has at times been intense – a fact somewhat overshadowed by the tumult inside the Republican Party – Sanders supporters were quick to accuse the Clinton campaign of foul play.
“I am 100 percent done with the cheating Clintons. They need to be stopped before they destroy our country. #BernieOrBust,” read one comment on the petition. “The people are tired of the Clinton’s breaking the laws and walking away winners when they have clearly cheated! Hillary should lose the state or 50% of her votes and all delegates she picked up and Bill should be arrested!” commented another.
So far the Clinton campaign hasn’t commented on the petition. Massachusetts Secretary of State William Galvin told the New York Times that the former president was allowed inside polling places but also noted that he had taken the step of reminding poll workers in New Bedford about the law.
“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,” he said.
Source – bbc