A Georgia polling place prevented a mother from voting because her crying toddler was “distracting” to other voters.
Jennifer Fair, a Dekalb County mother of three, brought her children to a downtown Decatur to cast her ballot early. According to Fair, once at the polling place her 2-year-old daughter Casey became agitated.
“She just got scared and freaked out and was crying,” Fair told the Atlantic Journal-Constitution. “Everybody kept coming over and trying to calm her down but it just freaked her out more.”
A poll worker told Fair she would have to leave and return when her daughter was calm, a move legally allowed by Georgia’s election laws:
“… Unless the poll manager or an assistant manager determines in his or her sole discretion that such child or children are causing a disturbance or are interfering with the conduct of voting.”
“She was restrained,” Fair said of the frustrating experience. “She wasn’t hitting anybody, preventing anybody from voting. She wasn’t campaigning.”
DeKalb County Elections Director Maxine Daniels told the AJC the polling manager made the right call.
“Many of the other voters at the precinct were turning around at the booths and it was distracting them,” Daniels said.
Fair hopes to return and cast her ballot for Hillary Clinton, noting as the mom of three daughters, “this was a very important election for me to vote.”