An Arkansas man said polling station staff forced him to change his shirt on election day after showing up in a Trump 2020 campaign staff t-shirt.
Scottie Thurman, of Fayetteville, said the Arkansas Secretary of State’s office told him it was legal to wear the shirt supporting President Donald Trump because he was not on the ballot for last Tuesday’s midterm elections, KFSM-TV first reported. Thurman said he filed a complaint against the Washington County Clerk’s Office after a polling station worker asked him to either hide the pro-Trump campaign shirt while he votes or replace entirely with another item of clothing.
“I walk in and the lady who takes your ID tells me I have to remove or return my shirt to be able to come in and vote,” Thurman told KSFM-TV Tuesday night. “I didn’t think it was fair. What I chatted with them a bit and they pulled out a rulebook that said all propaganda has to be 100 feet from the gate.”
Thurman was eventually allowed to vote, but only after changing his shirt before entering the actual voting area.
Arkansas state law prohibits political propaganda from being present at polling stations on election day, but the Trump shirt fell into a legal warning because the president was not seeking to be re-elected this year. According to Arkansas State Code Arkansas Code Annotated 7-1-104 “It is illegal for anyone to go to a polling station on election day and distribute or give away campaign cards, placards or other items for the purpose of influencing voters to vote for a candidate except as currently provided. by the law.”
In response, Washington County Election Commission coordinator Jennifer Price told local news outlets that registered and eligible voters “should be able to vote … Our election officials do their best on election day, and many of them are volunteers ”.
Memories of Trump, including his “Make America Great Again” hats, have sparked skirmishes at establishments across the country. In July, a San Antonio teenager had his hat ripped off his head by a Trump critic who yelled “you don’t support shit” and called him a racial insult.