A pair of conservative Georgia poll workers allege they were removed from their Fulton County polling location in what one is calling a “felony violation” of their rights.
Laura Kronen told the American Tribune in an exclusive interview that she and her teenage son both signed up months ago to be paid election day workers and went through all of the training programs, only to be turned away by election officials shortly after they had arrived in the early hours Tuesday morning to prepare for the day of voting.
Kronen shared the news on Twitter, commenting that she and her son had been asked to leave and were at first not given any specific reason about why they were being asked to leave. Later, Kronen went on to say that several different reasons were provided to her.
My son and I were just KICKED OUT OF BEING A FULTON COUNTY POLL WORKER because I posted on Twitter this morning that I was working at the polls to ensure a free and fair election. HELP!
— Laura K (@LauraKronen) November 8, 2022
According to Kronen, upon first hearing she needed to leave the premises it was because of a tweet in which she said:
Good morning! My son and I have arrived at our polling location in Fulton County to help make sure there is a free and fair election!
For reference, her tweet captured an identical sentiment shared on his website on election integrity which reads, in part:
Welcome to the Poll Worker training website. As the state’s chief elections officer, it’s my responsibility to maintain the security and integrity of elections in Georgia. On behalf of my office, the State Election Board, and our county and municipal election officials, thank you for serving as a poll worker. Poll workers are essential to the elections process, and we appreciate your willingness to serve your community.
As Kronen said, “[I]sn’t that the motto behind the entire election? Like, isn’t that what we’re promoting?”
As she continued speaking to officials and pushing back against her removal, Kronen said a person in a supervisory role informed her that the reason for her being asked to leave out was a tweet of hers from November 3rd. Even though Kronen asserted poll workers were only asked to refrain from partisan speech while working the polls, and despite other poll workers indubitably voicing their own preferences online, Kronen felt potentially singled out for her comment regarding skepticism over the media’s narrative that delays in counting reinforce the notion “they have to figure out ways to cheat.”
Kronen, referring to the November third tweet and the sentiment in it, asked, “[W]hat’s wrong with that? That seems like the mission of all poll workers right there to make sure it’s fair. That’s what they literally have been preaching everywhere in the state.”
Kronen told us that police then arrived to escort her away from the polling place and her choice at that point was to leave the polling location or face arrest. It was also at this time that Kronen alleges one police officer confided to her that she was being “clearly targeted for [her] political beliefs.”
Kronen also recounted that the final online “pep rally” on Sunday evening featured a bizarre celebration of poll workers helping to make this election “historic.”
When Kronen asked moderators and participants what they were “making history” about, she said those questions went unanswered. Kronen alleges that the recorded training session, and the conversations in it, were then used by election officials to raise concerns over Kronen’s participation as a poll worker on Tuesday.
As for her appearance and speech Tuesday morning at the polling location, Kronen said she was following every rule handed down and that nothing from that day could have been used against her. Speaking on that, Kronen said:
“We never even brought up anything regarding a political affiliation, or a person running. We never even mentioned a name. Nothing. We were wearing black clothing. We were wearing their voter shirts. Like there’s not there’s nothing that can possibly indicate what our political party is what our affiliation is. Nothing.”
Kronen also alleges that she was not the only one asked to leave. She said that her seventeen-year-old son had also signed up as a paid poll worker with her and was with her at the time as this all took place.
Unlike Kronen, he did not post to social media or type questions in the “pep rally” chat box, two of the main reasons Kronen alleges that she was asked to leave. Kronen questioning the grounds on which he was asked to leave, asked:
“He’s not even a voter yet. He’s seventeen. But [they’re[ thinking probably that he has the same political beliefs as me. That’s their assumption. He has nothing to do with any of these other pieces. Another felony, he should not have been. He should not have been removed. He had nothing to do with me posting [the] good morning message or anything else.”
Kronen said she pushed back again with election officials, asking“So what did he do? Tell me what he did?”
Speaking to us, she alleges the offiicials said “[i]t doesn’t matter. He has to leave.”
The American Tribune reached out for comment via email from the Georgia election board chairperson, but received an automatic reply that she was on vacation. If she or her office respond, their response will be added to this article.
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