When one reads a headline like this one, "Kennedy Campaign Staffer Violates State Election Law," you expect some big story about political intrigue or something really juicy.
Instead, Washington Street Politics, the blog that published that headline, provides a picture with a Melina Kennedy staffer wearing a sticker while early voting. Yep. That's apparently it. The offending picture is to the right. The offending blog post can be found here.
At least when Abdul puts something up, he makes it interesting. This perhaps isn't even a violation at all.
The state statute includes the word "knowingly" in it. Note section B of IC 3-14-3-16 below.
Sec. 16. (a) As used in this section, "electioneering" includes expressing support or opposition to any candidate or political party or expressing approval or disapproval of any public question in any manner that could reasonably be expected to convey that support or opposition to another individual. The term does not include expressing support or opposition to a candidate or a political party or expressing approval or disapproval of a public question in:
(1) material mailed to a voter; or
(2) a telephone or an electronic communication with a voter.
(b) A person who knowingly does any electioneering:
(1) on election day within:
(A) the polls; or
(B) the chute;
(2) within an area in the office of the circuit court clerk or a satellite office of the circuit court clerk established under IC 3-11-10-26.3 used by an absentee voter board to permit an individual to cast an absentee ballot; or
(3) except for a voter who is:
(A) the person's spouse;
(B) an incapacitated person (as defined in IC 29-3-1-7.5) for whom the person has been appointed the guardian (as defined in IC 29-3-1-6); or
(C) a member of the person's household;
in the presence of a voter whom the person knows possesses an absentee ballot provided to the voter in accordance with Indiana law;
commits a Class A misdemeanor.
Since the staffer had no doubt been across the street at the rally for early voting just minutes before, you could reasonably say that he might have forgotten to remove the sticker from his lapel. If you wanted to take this to court, you would certainly have to prove that he KNOWINGLY wore the sticker into the Clerk's Office.
That makes this one tough to enforce, I think. Anyway, I've already spent too much time on this non-story.
Is this the kind of campaign the Republicans are going to run at Melina Kennedy? Well, if it is, then it's going to be easier to get to the 25th floor for Melina than I thought.