From Dennis B. Roddy
WITH HOURS TO GO before the polls close in the 12th Congressional District, the campaign of Republican candidate Tim Burns is crying foul across county lines.
First, they claim that election workers at a polling place in Uniontown, Fayette County, handed out extra ballots. Apparently unaware that the special election to fill the remainder of the late John Murtha's congressional term was on the Democratic and Republican primary ballots, they also handed more than 100 separate ballots intended for independent voters who would get to cast ballots in only the special election.
(See Rich Lord's story below.)
IN JOHNSTOWN, says Burns campaign manager Kent Gates, the Democratic candidate committed an election day no-no. Mr. Critz wandered into a polling place in Westmont. Under state election laws, candidates are supposed to stay out of the polling places unless they're voting. From the photo forwarded by Mr. Gates, Mr. Critz was not voting. He was standing around. No telling how serious a matter this truly should be, but Mr. Gates declared, "This is not amateur hour here."
IN TRUTH, it really is. Neither Mr. Burns nor Mr. Critz has sought such a high office before. In the age of hyper-partisianship and phone cameras, we're bound to see more of this.
UPDATE: Critz might be a newcomer to the subtleties of polling places, but his spokeswoman, Holly Shulman, pretty well knows the drill.
She issued a response to the Burns camp's complaints tonight. As ever, the blame was with the other side.