A south Florida Islamic center was looking forward to joining the almost 100 churches and synagogues that serve as polling sites for Palm Beach County in November. 2016 was the first year that the Islamic Center of Boca Raton had been invited to process voters, and officials at the center started preparing soon after the county elections supervisor first reached out to them in April. They planned to serve desserts and snacks and set out chairs for older voters waiting in line.
Then, out of the blue, the center’s president received a call from a reporter in early July asking how he felt about Palm Beach County Election Supervisor Susan Bucher’s decision to relocate the polling site.
“I said, ‘who told you that?’” Bassem Alhalabi told TPM in a Tuesday phone interview. “He said, ‘That’s what I heard.’ So it was a rumor in the air which meant to me that the news leaked out before it was official.”
The mosque leader's account of being blindsided by that news doesn't match up with the county elections supervisor's public comments on the relocation.
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