State investigates Chicago election-judge calls

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CHICAGO (AP) – State prosecutors are investigating complaints that bogus automated phone calls to Chicago election judges dissuaded many from turning up at polling stations on Election Day.

A spokesman for the Cook County state’s attorney’s office, Steve Campbell, confirmed the criminal investigation Thursday. He declined to discuss details.

Officials say the calls on the weekend before the election provided judges false instructions, including that they needed to undergo additional training.

Chicago election board spokesman Jim Allen has told reporters that at least 2,000 judges out of more than 10,000 scheduled to work were no-shows on Election Day. He says at least some may have decided not show up because of the calls.

Allen characterized the calls as “malicious.” He didn’t say if Democrat or Republican-affiliated judges were more impacted.