At Colo. Polling Place, Church Has Anti-Abortion Display

Nov 6, 2012 8:36pm
ht colorado anti abortion display ll 121106 wblog At Colo. Polling Place, Church Has Anti Abortion Display

Image credit: Jessica Cuneo/Daily Camera

A Boulder, Colo., church that is serving as a polling location has chosen to leave up its anti-abortion display for Election Day.

Check the ABC News Live Blog for updates throughout the day and results all night.

The Sacred Heart of Mary Catholic Church has left up signs and crosses meant to represent aborted fetuses as part of an October “Respect Life” month display on church grounds where Boulder County voters came to cast their votes today.

Molly Tayer, Boulder County’s deputy clerk and election coordinator, told ABCNews.com that she had contacted the church regarding the removal of the religious signage when it was brought to her attention a few weeks ago.

She said was told initially that the display would be taken down come the first weekend of November.

But Tayer got a call back on Friday from the church to let her know that “father has decided not to take it down.”

“We feel badly that we didn’t realize that this wasn’t going to be taken down this weekend, otherwise I would have tried to make other accommodations [for voters],” Tayer said. “After you advertise a polling place, it’s very difficult to change.”

Church representatives had signed a contract to serve as a polling place in April, said Tayer.

While there are regulations preventing electioneering – handing out materials, posting yard signs  – within 100 feet of an actual polling site, the church has not violated these rules, Tayer said.

According to Karna Swanson, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Denver, officials had previously come to the church, surveyed the exhibit, and found no violation.

Voters can drive up to the polling site and not even see the signs, Swanson said.

“You’re going to have some religious signs around if you use the church as a polling site,” said Swanson.

While she hasn’t heard many people complain as of Election Day, Tayer said that “a number of our voting population found [the display] offensive.”

This is the second time the church has served as a polling site, Tayer said.

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