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Pennsylvania State Department must issue immediate clarification on press access to polls

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  1. Newsgathering

In response to several reports of county officials blocking press access to entire buildings where voting takes place in Pennsylvania, attorneys from the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association are urging the Pennsylvania Department of State to immediately clarify journalists’ access to polling locations on Election Day.

In a letter sent to the Department of State’s chief counsel on Oct. 31, the Reporters Committee and Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association said the state’s election code allows a 10-foot barrier between reporters and the room where voting takes place. However, the letter continues, attempts to extend that barrier to entire buildings “raise significant constitutional concerns that must be addressed before Election Day.”