Montana Secretary of State: No Voting Wednesday

By Beacon Staff

Montana Secretary of State Brad Johnson just sent out an e-mail titled: “Statement on Election Practical Jokes.” Apparently, his office has received a “few” complaints about a text message that encourages Montanans to wait until Wednesday to vote because the lines are so long.

Of course, you can’t vote tomorrow. And there have been no reports of major problems, or abnormally long lines, at Montana polling stations. Johnson:

Montanans should know: Election day is today. After eight o’clock p.m. today, there is no other opportunity to vote in the 2008 election.

Both the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Montana Attorney General’s Office have expressed interest in the matter. Here’s Johnson’s entire e-mail:

HELENA – Today Secretary of State Brad Johnson’s office issued an adisory about a possible practical joke concerning today’s election.

This office has received a few complaints about text messages encouraging individuals to wait and vote on Wednesday because of long lines at polling places today. In all likelihood, this is a practical joke. But in case anyone actually believes these messages, Montanans should know: Election day is today. After eight o’clock p.m. today, there is no other opportunity to vote in the 2008 election.

Johnson said, “So far polling place lines are moving relatively quickly. There’s no reason any registered voter should choose not to vote. Jokes about trying to talk your political opponents into not voting are one thing. But if anyone believes it, we want to present them with the facts.”

It is in fact a violation of state and federal law. The US Attorney’s office and the Montana Attorney General’s office have expressed an interest in the matter. Complaints about the subject should be directed to law enforcement.

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