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VOA慢速英语:美国大选中投票监督员的历史和作用

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The History and Role of Poll Watchers in US Elections

美国大选中投票监督员的历史和作用

Republican Party activists are urging supporters across the United States to closely watch early voting sites and ballot drop boxes in the weeks before elections next month.

共和党活动人士敦促美国各地的支持者在下月大选前几周内密切关注早期投票地点和选票投放箱。

The party’s effort expands on the traditional duties of election observers.

该党此举扩大了选举观察员的传统职责。

The custom of “poll watching” may take on new meaning this year with an increase in mail-in voting because of the COVID-19 health crisis. At the same time, President Donald Trump claims that mail voting can lead to cheating. Trump is seeking re-election as the Republican candidate.

由于新冠肺炎健康危机,今年“投票监督”的习俗可能会因邮寄投票的增加拥有新的含义。与此同时,美国总统特朗普声称,邮寄投票可能导致作弊。特朗普作为共和党候选人正在寻求连任。

What is poll watching?

什么是投票监督?

Poll watchers have been part of U.S. elections dating back to the 18th century. Their activities are controlled by state laws and local rules. Members of both major political parties keep an eye on the voting - and each other - to make sure things go smoothly.

投票监督员早在18世纪就参与了美国大选。他们的活动受州法律和地方法规的制约。选举中两个主要政党的成员都密切关注投票情况同时互相关注对方的情况以确保选举顺利进行。

State laws call observers inside polling stations different things. States also may ask them to do different things. In some areas, poll “watchers” are different from “challengers,” who can point out people they suspect are not legal voters. In other states, poll watchers also do the challenging.

各州法律对投票站内的监督员有不同的称呼。各州也可能要求他们做不同的事情。在某些地区,投票“监督员”与“挑战者”不同,后者可以指出他们怀疑的非合法选民。在其他州,投票监督员也有挑战者的角色。

Other rules set limits on how close party supporters can stand outside polling stations.

其他一些规定限制了各政党支持者与投票站的距离。

What are the rules?

监督规则是什么?

Rules on who can “watch” voting, and the powers given to these observers, differ from state to state. In Pennsylvania, for example, poll watchers can observe the election - checking turnout and voting machines -- and also challenge voters by taking their concerns to election officials. However, the challengers generally are barred from talking directly with voters, or from making baseless claims that slow down voting.

各州对于哪些人可以做“监督员”以及他们有何权利有不同的规定。例如,在宾夕法尼亚州,投票监督员可以监督选举工作——检查投票人数和投票箱,也可以通过向选举官员检举来挑战选民。不过,挑战者通常都被禁止与选民直接对话,或提出毫无根据的要求从而减慢投票速度。

Requirements for poll watchers also differ. They usually are supposed to be registered voters. In some states, they must be approved before the vote by election officials. The state of North Carolina requires that poll workers be of “good moral character.”

各州对投票监督员的要求也不同。通常他们需要是注册选民。在一些州,他们必须在投票前得到选举官方的批准才能上岗。北卡罗来纳州要求投票监督员要具有“良好的道德品质”。

Observers also are permitted by law in states that hold elections mostly by mail. In Oregon, for example, the law says parties and candidates can sponsor observers to watch election workers open ballots and count them. But these observers must behave in a way that “will not interfere with an orderly procedure.”

在主要通过邮寄投票进行选举的各州,投票监督员还会获得法律认可。例如,俄勒冈州法律规定政党和候选人可以赞助监督员监查选举工作人员验票计票。但这些监督员的行为必须“不能干扰有序的选举程序”。

Supporters of parties and candidates may stand outside polling stations with signs and other political advertising, an activity known as “electioneering.” But laws governing these activities also differ from one state to the next. Generally, these supporters must keep a distance from the entrance.

政党和候选人的支持者可以站在投票站外展示标语和其他政治广告,这项活动被视为“竞选”活动。但各州管理这类活动的法律也各不相同。一般来说,支持者必须与投票站入口保持一定的距离。

Are guns permitted?

是否允许持枪?

In a year in which protesters and armed militias clashed, some voting rights activists fear a return of armed groups showing up outside polling stations.

在抗议者和武装民兵发生冲突的年份,一些投票权活动人士担心武装组织会出现在投票站外。

In some states, including Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Carolina, Wisconsin and Virginia, people can carry guns openly in public. There are no laws in those states directly barring people from carrying weapons into polling stations.

在包括宾夕法尼亚州、密歇根州、北卡罗来纳州、威斯康星州和弗吉尼亚州在内的一些州,人们可以在公开场合携带枪支。这些州没有法律直接禁止人们携带武器进入投票站。

Yet state and federal laws make it illegal for anyone to try to intimidate voters.

然而,各州和联邦法律规定任何恐吓选民的行为都是非法的。

Voting rights organizations say they will have thousands of lawyers ready to intervene with local officials or seek court orders to stop such activity.

选举权组织表示,他们有数千名律师准备好与当地官员交涉或直接寻求法院政令来阻止此类活动。

I’m Ashley Thompson.

阿什利·汤普森报道。

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The History and Role of Poll Watchers in US Elections

Republican Party activists are urging supporters across the United States to closely watch early voting sites and ballot drop boxes in the weeks before elections next month.

The party’s effort expands on the traditional duties of election observers.

The custom of “poll watching” may take on new meaning this year with an increase in mail-in voting because of the COVID-19 health crisis. At the same time, President Donald Trump claims that mail voting can lead to cheating. Trump is seeking re-election as the Republican candidate.

What is poll watching?

Poll watchers have been part of U.S. elections dating back to the 18th century. Their activities are controlled by state laws and local rules. Members of both major political parties keep an eye on the voting - and each other - to make sure things go smoothly.

State laws call observers inside polling stations different things. States also may ask them to do different things. In some areas, poll “watchers” are different from “challengers,” who can point out people they suspect are not legal voters. In other states, poll watchers also do the challenging.

Other rules set limits on how close party supporters can stand outside polling stations.

What are the rules?

Rules on who can “watch” voting, and the powers given to these observers, differ from state to state. In Pennsylvania, for example, poll watchers can observe the election - checking turnout and voting machines -- and also challenge voters by taking their concerns to election officials. However, the challengers generally are barred from talking directly with voters, or from making baseless claims that slow down voting.

Requirements for poll watchers also differ. They usually are supposed to be registered voters. In some states, they must be approved before the vote by election officials. The state of North Carolina requires that poll workers be of “good moral character.”

Observers also are permitted by law in states that hold elections mostly by mail. In Oregon, for example, the law says parties and candidates can sponsor observers to watch election workers open ballots and count them. But these observers must behave in a way that “will not interfere with an orderly procedure.”

Supporters of parties and candidates may stand outside polling stations with signs and other political advertising, an activity known as “electioneering.” But laws governing these activities also differ from one state to the next. Generally, these supporters must keep a distance from the entrance.

Are guns permitted?

In a year in which protesters and armed militias clashed, some voting rights activists fear a return of armed groups showing up outside polling stations.

In some states, including Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Carolina, Wisconsin and Virginia, people can carry guns openly in public. There are no laws in those states directly barring people from carrying weapons into polling stations.

Yet state and federal laws make it illegal for anyone to try to intimidate voters.

Voting rights organizations say they will have thousands of lawyers ready to intervene with local officials or seek court orders to stop such activity.

I’m Ashley Thompson.


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