The letters have been despatched to elections places of work within the presidential battlegrounds of Georgia and Nevada, in addition to California, Oregon and Washington, with some being intercepted earlier than they arrived. 4 of the letters contained fentanyl, the FBI and U.S. Postal Inspection Service reported in an announcement to elections officers Thursday.
“Regulation enforcement is working diligently to intercept any further letters earlier than they’re delivered,” the assertion mentioned.
The Pierce County auditor’s workplace in Tacoma, Washington, launched photographs of the letter it obtained, displaying it had been postmarked in Portland, Oregon, and skim partially: “Finish elections now.”
Among the many places of work that gave the impression to be focused was Fulton County in Georgia, which incorporates Atlanta and is the biggest voting jurisdiction in one of many nation’s most necessary presidential swing states. Authorities have been working to intercept the letter. Within the meantime, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger mentioned officers have been sending the overdose-reversal drug naloxone to the workplace as a precaution.
“That is home terrorism, and it must be condemned by anybody that holds elected workplace and anybody that wishes to carry elective workplace anyplace in America,” mentioned Raffensperger, a Republican.
Authorities in Lane County, Oregon, which incorporates the College of Oregon, have been investigating a bit of mail that arrived on the native election workplace Wednesday. Nobody who got here involved with it had skilled any damaging well being results, mentioned Devon Ashbridge, spokeswoman for the Lane County Elections Workplace in Eugene.
The incident prompted officers to shut the workplace and delayed a day pickup of ballots. Ashbridge declined to offer additional particulars.
“Somebody tried to terrorize our elections workers, and that’s not OK,” Ashbridge mentioned.
On Wednesday, authorities in Washington state mentioned 4 county election places of work needed to be evacuated as election employees have been processing ballots forged in Tuesday’s election, delaying vote-counting.
Election places of work in King, Skagit, Spokane and Pierce counties obtained envelopes containing powders. Native regulation enforcement officers mentioned the substances in King and Spokane counties field-tested constructive for fentanyl. In at the very least one different case, the substance was baking soda.
Pierce County Auditor Linda Farmer launched photographs of the envelope and letter her workplace obtained. The letter contained a warning concerning the vulnerability of “poll drops” and skim: “Finish elections now. Cease giving energy to the correct that they don’t have. We’re in cost now and there’s no extra want for them.”
“We now have actually good proof that it wouldn’t be uncovered by means of the pores and skin, or by means of inhalation,” Perrone mentioned.
It’s the most recent disruption for the reason that 2020 election to the workplace that oversees voting in and round Atlanta.
Fulton County Fee Chairman Robb Pitts, talking at a information convention Thursday with Raffensperger, mentioned the county’s election employees had been below menace since at the very least when two of them have been singled out following the 2020 presidential election, with then-Republican President Donald Trump, lawyer Rudolph Giuliani and others falsely alleging that election employees have been stuffing ballots to assist Democrats. Democrat Joe Biden narrowly received the state.
“There’s individuals on the market who need to do hurt to our employees and need to disrupt, interrupt, the circulation of democracy and free, open and clear elections, and we’re ready for it,” mentioned Pitts, an elected Democrat.
Many election places of work throughout the USA have taken steps to extend the safety of their buildings and enhance protections for employees amid an onslaught of harassment and threats following the 2020 election and the false claims that it was rigged.
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