National eyes will watch Hattiesburg special election

National eyes have now turned upon the mayoral special election.

The Justice Department announced Monday it will monitor the special municipal election in Hattiesburg to determine who will become mayor on September 24.

Each year the department deploys federal observers from the Office of Personnel Management as well as departmental staff to monitor elections all across the country. The personnel will monitor polling at different precincts as well as a civil rights division attorney will maintain contact with local election officials, according to a prepared statement released Monday.

The statement also explained that this type of monitoring is designed to ensure compliance with the Voting Rights Act which prohibits discrimination in the election process based on race, color or membership in a minority language group.

The Federal Government asks that citizens wishing to report complaints dealing with discriminatory voting practices such as harassment or intimidation, contact the Justice Department Civil Rights Division at 1-800-253-3931.

For more information on the Voting Rights Act and other federal voting right laws, visit