States may have the power to regulate elections, but the feds are staying close.
This Election Day marks the first major federal election since the Supreme Court overturned key provisions of the Voting Rights Act last summer, giving some states the power to regulate elections without federal oversight. The feds, however, are not stepping back from the ballot box entirely.
The Justice Department has dispatched monitors from its civil-rights division to polling places in 28 jurisdictions in 18 states. The states include Arizona, Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas—all states that were previously required to receive permission from the federal government to make changes to their voting laws due to a history of racial discrimination.
The poll monitors will "gather information on, among other things, whether voters are subject to different voting qualifications or procedures on the basis of race, color, or membership in a language minority group." They will also be checking on the availability of resources for people with disabilities.
Here's the full list of counties, by state:
Charles Mix County
The Justice Department is also asking citizens in all polling stations across the country to report any complaints about their voting experience, and it's giving them four different ways to do so: Voters can call, fax, email, or submit a form on the department's website.