California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) is preparing his state for civil unrest following the general election next Tuesday, Politico reports.
“As it relates to making sure people are safe, making sure not only the process of voting is a safe and healthy one, but keeping people safe after the election for whatever may occur,” Newsom told Politico about possible election night chaos. “The answer is yes, we are always gaming out different scenarios and making sure that we are prepared.”
The governor did not specify what exactly he has done to prepare for possible election night mayhem.
His comments come one day after Beverly Hills Police Chief Dominick Rivetti announced that the city’s iconic Rodeo Drive would be closed on Election Day and Nov. 4 to curb possible unrest following the election. He said the Beverly Hills Police Department would be on “full alert” beginning on Halloween, and during election week.
Other jurisdictions across the country are instituting precautionary measures as fears over possible violence following the 2020 election have increased. A YouGov Poll released earlier this month found that 56 percent anticipated an increase in violence following the 2020 election.
Officials in Chicago have held an “all-hazards” drill going through how they would handle election-related threats and violence.
“Given what we experienced over the course of the spring and the summer, we can’t presume that what’s going to happen … is going to be peaceful,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) said on a conference call Tuesday. “We are preparing for the worst. So what we’ve been doing is a lot of drilling, a lot of making sure that we break down barriers, that no one part of election security is operating in a silo.”
Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison has said that law enforcement is “planning, practicing, creating protocols to deploy our resources before, on and even after Election Day.” He added that other departments are prepared to respond to voter harassment or intimidation, as well as to “de-escalate tensions at the polls.”