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2670d ago / 4:53 PM UTC

Voters Wrongly Asked for ID at the Polls in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has seen widespread reports of voters wrongly being asked for identification by poll workers, according to Election Protection, a coalition of organizations monitoring voting. 

Two voters told NBC News they had been asked for photo ID. 

“I recently moved into my voting area, so I brought everything with me, and I figured I would hand them my voter registration card,” said Nicole Sorgini, 27, of Philadelphia, who voted at the Cook Wissackon School.

“When I handed it to them they said, 'No, I need your driver’s license,’ and someone else in line said, ‘Oh, I only have my voter ID card.'"

Poll workers then told them they require driver's licenses for new voters, Sorghini said.

"I had my driver’s license so I just used that, but I told them technically under the law, you can use the voter ID card.” 

Sorgini said she called Election Protection to report it. 

“I’m thinking she was maybe just misinformed,” Sorgini said of the worker. “But it was worrisome because there were a lot of new voters there, and you don’t know if everyone had photo ID.” 

Ryan Kellermeyer, 39, also of Philadelphia, said when he showed up to vote at Cayuga Elementary, the poll worker asked him for ID. He told her it was not required and said she insisted. Ultimately, he said, she allowed him to vote without showing ID. 

“I think she wasn’t trained very well,” said Kellermeyer, who has voted at the location before and believes the worker was new. “I was told by others she had been asking everyone for ID.”

Kellermeyer said he reported it to a pollwatcher and to Clinton campaigners outside. Although he does not think it was nefarious, he is concerned that some people might be dissuaded from voting.

Under Pennsylvania law, ID is required for new voters or voters voting at a new site for the first time, but photo ID is not required. A photo ID law passed in 2012 was blocked ahead of the 2012 election. It was struck down by a court the following year.

A spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania secretary of state’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

1141d ago / 2:36 PM UTC

More than 3,900 died of Covid-19 Thursday, Nevada sets record

Thursday was the third consecutive day that more than 3,000 died of Covid-19 in the United States, with a daily total of 3,957.

The country also logged 229,842 new cases, according to NBC News' tally

Overall, 23,421,424 cases have been confirmed and 389,652 people have died from Covid-19 in the United States. The number of New daily cases has risen 20 percent in the past two weeks, and the number of new daily deaths has risen almost 23 percent.

Nevada set a single-day record with 62 deaths.

1152d ago / 3:32 PM UTC

The U.S. records more than 210,000 new coronavirus cases Sunday

The United States recorded 215,867 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, along with 1,522 new deaths.

The country has logged at least 1,000 deaths a day every day since November 29.

The following states set new single-day case records Sunday:

  • Arizona, 17,234 cases
  • New Hampshire, 1,266 cases
  • Oklahoma, 8,017 cases
  • South Carolina, 8,951 cases

Overall, there have been 20,711,482 recorded cases and 352,340 deaths in the United States as of 10 a.m. Monday.

2661d ago / 11:00 PM UTC

Trump's Inaugural Committee Yet to on Decide Lobbyist Ban

While President-elect Donald Trump's transition has placed restrictions on some lobbyists from serving in the transition, the inaugural committee has not yet made such determinations

Three members of the inaugural committee, which is stacked with Trump's and Vice Preisdent-elect Mike Pence's top donors and fundraisers, told NBC News that a decision hasn't yet been made on whether restrictions will be placed on the amount a person could give to or if a ban on lobbyists or corporations would be instituted. 

An announcement could come out as early as tomorrow but more likely next week the sources said. 

The inaugural committee is tasked with raising money for the inauguration beyond what the government allows. It also pays for balls, parties and events surrounding the event. 

In 2008, President-elect Barack Obama placed a $50,000 limit on individual donors and banned contributions from lobbyists, corporations and super PACs. The committee also entertained no sponsorship agreements.  

In 2012, President Obama loosened those restrictions and allowed for contributions from corporations but not from lobbyists or super PACs

The law allows unlimited contributions from corporations and U.S. permanent residents. 

2661d ago / 7:55 PM UTC

Romney and Trump to Meet This Weekend

Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney will meet with President-elect Donald Trump this weekend, NBC News confirms.  

Romney delivered a blistering takedown of Trump in a speech in March, calling the then-candidate “a phony” and “a fraud.” Trump has called Romney a loser and said he “choked like a dog” during his 2012 bid against President Obama.

A source close to Trump with direct knowledge of the president-elect's thinking confirms the meeting is to discuss the position of Secretary of State. 

Trump endorsed Romney during his campaign four years ago. The former Massachusetts governor began to repair the relationship last week by calling to congratulate Trump on his surprise win.   

2661d ago / 7:01 PM UTC

Obama 'Cautiously Optimistic' About Trump Presidency

President Obama on Thursday said he is “cautiously optimistic” about Donald Trump’s presidency once the reality of his immense responsibilities sets in. 

“There's something about the solemn responsibilities of that office, the extraordinary demands that are placed on the United States, not just by its own people, but by people around the world that forces you to focus,” Obama said during a press conference in Germany on Thursday.

“If you're not serious about the job, then you probably won't be there very long because it will expose problems,” Obama added.

The president added that he “wouldn’t advise” those opposed to Trump to be silent or stop protesting, but said the election should be an important reminder about the importance of voting.

2662d ago / 4:43 PM UTC

Sens. Schumer and McConnell Elected Senate Leaders

New York Sen. Chuck Schumer was easily elected by his caucus to lead Senate Democrats for the next two years and Republicans unanimously re-elected Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky to serve as Majority Leader.

Schumer, who is set to replace retiring Sen. Harry Reid, will spearhead the party's messaging and policy priorities in the first two years of a Donald Trump administration.

Read more here. 

2662d ago / 4:32 PM UTC

Martin O'Malley Withdraws From DNC Race

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley pulled himself out of contention to be the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee Wednesday, days after he said he was considering a bid.

"While I'm grateful to the supportive friends who have urged me to consider running for DNC Chair, I will not be seeking our Party's Chairmanship. The DNC needs a Chair who can do the job fully and with total impartiality. The national interest must come first," O'Malley said in an email to supporters.

Read more here.

2663d ago / 6:39 PM UTC

McCain Warns Against Russian Reset

Republican Sen. John McCain on Tuesday warned against any attempt to reboot U.S.-Russia relations under Donald Trump’s presidency.

“With the U.S. presidential transition underway, Vladimir Putin has said in recent days that he wants to improve relations with the United States. We should place as much faith in such statements as any other made by a former KGB agent who has plunged his country into tyranny, murdered his political opponents, invaded his neighbors, threatened America’s allies, and attempted to undermine America’s elections,” the Arizona senator said in a statement.

Russia on Tuesday launched a major military offensive in Syria where Putin is backing Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Throughout the campaign, Trump spoke highly of Russian President Vladimir Putin and said he would improve relations between the two countries. Putin and Trump spoke after his victory last week.

“The Obama Administration’s last attempt at resetting relations with Russia culminated in Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and military intervention in the Middle East,” McCain said. “At the very least, the price of another ‘reset’ would be complicity in Putin and Assad’s butchery of the Syrian people.”

2667d ago / 5:38 PM UTC

Martin O'Malley: 'I'm Taking a Hard Look at DNC Chair'

Even though the election for the next Democratic National Committee chairman will not take place until next year, the race is heating up quickly with former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley adding his name to the mix Friday. "Since the election, I have been approached by many Democrats who believe our party needs new leadership. I'm taking a hard look at DNC Chair because I know how badly we need to reform our nominating process, articulate a bold progressive vision, recommit ourselves to higher wages and a stronger middle class, and return to our roots as a nationwide, grassroots party," O'Malley said in a statement.O'Malley ran for the Democratic nomination against Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders this year, but withdrew after a disappointing showing in the Iowa caucuses, where he finished with less than 1 percent of the delegates. O'Malley has experience on TV and in the national spotlight, and he led a party organ as chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, where he helped raise millions of dollars. He's seen as a loyal party solider, though that may not be as much of an asset at a time when many are demanding a fresh take. Former DNC Chair and Vermont Gov. Howard Dean has also said he's interested in the job, while Rep. Keith Ellison is expected to announce his bid Monday after securing the support for Sen. Chuck Schumer, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and warm words from Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Others are likely to join the fray as well.

2667d ago / 3:04 PM UTC

Schumer Backs Ellison for DNC Chair

As Democrats plot a path forward after Donald Trump's victory, incoming Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer backed progressive Rep. Keith Ellison for chairman of the Democratic National Committee Friday, an aide confirmed. The two spoke yesterday, according to the aide, who said Schumer believes the DNC should take on the role of coordinating grassroots organizing in sync with legislative battles on Capitol Hill. 

Schumer adds momentum behind Ellison, following support from Sen. Bernie Sanders and several liberals groups. Sen. Elizabeth Warren told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Thursday night that Ellison would be a "terrific" DNC chair. 

Ellison, who backed Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary, has been quiet as allies move quickly around him. He told the liberal group Democracy for America Thursday night he would make an announcement on Monday. 

Former DNC Chair and Vermont Gov. Howard has tossed announced his bid. "I am very interested in the chairmanship of the DNC, not so much because I think I’m the only person that can fix it, but I think we need a full-time chair," he told MSNBC Friday. 

After the tenure of former chairwoman Debbie Wassmerman Schultz, some DNC members want a full-time leader who does not hold elected office, which could complicate Ellison's bid. Some close to Hillary Clinton are pushing former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to run as well.

2668d ago / 4:23 PM UTC

Trump Affirms US, UK Alliance in Call With British PM

President-elect Donald Trump spoke with British Prime Minister Theresa May to affirm the “very special” relationship between the two countries, according to a readout of the conversation.

May congratulated Trump on his election and said his commitment to unite America must extend across the globe.

“The prime minister said that we have a long history of shared values and added that she looked forward to that continuing in the future,” according to the press release from the British Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Trump called the United Kingdom a “very, very special place for me and for our country.”