Rockville, MD

AU was contacted by an election judge who complained that the Montgomery County Board of Elections had enforced Jewish dietary restrictions on poll workers who staffed a polling place located in a Jewish day school. Election judges, who are required to stay at the polling place for the entire day, were not permitted to eat meat or fowl in deference to Jewish religious tenets. When one election judge complained to the Board of Elections, the Election Director offered only to allow the judge to transfer to a different polling place. We wrote a letter explaining that the Board had unconstitutionally entangled itself with religion by enforcing religious laws at its polling place. We asked the Board to stop enforcing religious restrictions and to reconsider the practice of designating religious facilities as polling places. In March 2010, the Board’s attorney informed us that the Board had voted to no longer use the day school as a polling place.