New York City Ramps Up Security for Election Day

Higher security as Trump and Clinton plan parties blocks apart.

ByABC News
November 7, 2016, 11:34 AM

— -- New York City is typically high on any list of possible terrorism targets for big public holidays and national events, and this year's election brings an added need for security as the two top presidential candidates will have their election night parties there, blocks away from each other.

This is the first time in over 70 years that both major-party presidential nominees will be in New York City on election night, and the city's police force is preparing in kind.

Carlos Gomez, the New York Police Department's chief of department, said the city is planning to deploy more officers on Tuesday than on any previous Election Day, "more than double than our previous high." He said more than 5,000 officers will work on Tuesday but would not give a specific number.

The police deployment plan will be "comparable to New Year's Eve and when Pope Francis visited last year," he said.

The NYPD's deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, John Miller, addressed alleged ISIS threats around the election but dismissed them as par for the course.

"ISIS puts out these threats widely over their social media before many events," he said. "We've seen them before holidays. We've seen them before special events. This is part of their M.O."

"We've come to a place where we take these things in stride and almost expect them," he said.

NYPD install a police security camera near the Hilton hotel in New York, Nov. 4, 2016, where Donald Trump organizers will gather on election night.
Bebeto Matthews/AP Photo

NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said police are "constantly monitoring" for terrorist threats but have found "nothing specific, nothing credible."

The city's Mayor Bill de Blasio said police will be at each of the city's 1,200 polling places, which will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Beyond that, he said, "we have beefed up our ability to handle multiple sites simultaneously," a capacity that will clearly be needed Tuesday night, when Clinton holds her election night event at the Javits Center and Trump holds his at a Hilton hotel in midtown Manhattan.

Former NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said, "There's no department better prepared to handle it."

"I think they're well prepared to handle any contingency, and there's no indication that there's going to be anything different," said Kelly, who is now an ABC News contributor.

He pointed to the NYPD's regular handling of major events, such as the annual start of the United Nations General Assembly, when more than 100 heads of government descend on the city.

The NYPD prepared its plans jointly with the Secret Service, which is charged with protecting the presidential candidates, said representatives from both organizations.