A photo of an on-duty police officer in full uniform was going viral Tuesday because the cop was wearing a pro-Donald Trump mask at a polling place in Florida as voters were casting their ballots early. The incident that prompted a swift rebuke from the Miami Police Department came amid warnings of voter intimidation after the president has seemingly been encouraging it to happen.
The officer in Miami was identified by the Miami Herald as Daniel Ubeda after the photographer posted it to social media Tuesday morning. While it was unclear whether Ubeda was there as a voter or in a professional capacity, what was clear is that the person who snapped the photo is a lawyer. That person, Steve Simeonidis, called for Ubeda to “be suspended immediately” for what he described as “city funded voter intimidation.”
Simeonidis also claimed what Ubeda did is illegal.
“Not only is this an egregious form of voter intimidation, but it’s also a crime,” he also tweeted.
To be clear, Florida law expressly prohibits any “political activities of state, county, and municipal officers and employees.”
The Miami Police Department responded by suggesting Ubeda would be disciplined but stopped short of saying he would be fired, arrested or cited for committing a crime, let alone facing a suspension.
“We are aware of the photograph being circulated of a Miami Police officer wearing a political mask in uniform,” the police department tweeted Tuesday afternoon. “This behavior is unacceptable, a violation of departmental policy, and is being addressed immediately.”
During his one debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, Trump called for his supporters to patrol polling places to prevent what he said was voter fraud from happening. The incident with Ubeda on Tuesday followed other Trump-supporting armed white men who plotted to kidnap Democratic governors seemingly heeding Trump’s previous calls to “liberate” Michigan and Virginia. Taken together, just two weeks ahead of what’s expected to be a contested election, the incidents might suggest that there will be more and similar acts of political vigilantism drawn along partisan lines that may turn violent.
Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundle said she won her re-election in August in part because of her embrace of police reform. She said over the summer that it was wrong to believe that she’s been soft on cops, NBC Miami reported at the time.
“There is a notion out there that’s a false narrative that our office – that myself and our team – do not prosecute police officers that violate the law,” Fernandez-Rundle said. “During my tenure we have prosecuted over 500 police and correctional officers.”
We shall see how — or if — Fernandez-Rundle reacts to this flagrant flouting of the law by a police officer sworn to uphold and enforce it.
This Is America: See The Countless Reports Of Voter Suppression In Georgia
1. Epic Lines
Source: 1 of 10
Happen to know anybody who could do this in Georgia? 🤷🏽♀️ no voting at my dads polling site pic.twitter.com/zEyQmXwEq2— DG911 2lite (@_2lite) November 6, 2018
2. Three Voting Machines
Source: 2 of 10
Ready to wait? Hundreds of voters stand in line for hours this morning at this SW Atlanta polling place. Only three voting machines! What’s going on here? Live report at noon. pic.twitter.com/lewTPUZnf1— Tom Regan (@tomreganWSB) November 6, 2018
3. 4.5 Hours To Wait To Vote...
Source: 3 of 10
I’m at Annistown Elementary School in Snellville, GA, where hundreds of voters have waited 4.5 hours to vote today because electronic voting machines weren’t working pic.twitter.com/4BJLYVtiEL— Kira Lerner (@kira_lerner) November 6, 2018
4. Common Is Offering Help...Source: 4 of 10
5. Good Samaritans Are Feeding People Waiting In Lines...Source: 5 of 10
6. Voter Points Out The Smooth Lines In A White NeighborhoodSource: 6 of 10
7. A Comparison To 150 Years...Source: 7 of 10
8. NAACP Releases A Statement
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BREAKING: It is imperative no one be denied the crucial right to vote because of a county’s failure to provide properly functioning voting machines.— Legal Defense Fund (@NAACP_LDF) November 6, 2018
Read our letter calling to extend the voting hours in Gwinnett County, Georgia: https://t.co/BVNmyWjC0g #GeorgiaVoting pic.twitter.com/UxJTNhYpqn
9. More Voters, Less Workers...Source: 9 of 10
10. Even Eric Holder Is Speaking Out...
Source: 10 of 10
4.5 hour waits in African American districts in Georgia. Good job Kemp. No one is surprised. And this guy wants a promotion to Governor? Be strong Georgia and vote for Stacey. @staceyabrams https://t.co/uW8c76CiWR— Eric Holder (@EricHolder) November 6, 2018
Voter Intimidation: Photo Shows Uniformed Cop Wearing Pro-Trump Mask At Miami Polling Place was originally published on newsone.com