Poll Watchers

Each qualified political party is entitled to appoint one (1) poll watcher for each polling place and early walk-in location in which the candidates of that political party are on the ballot.

Each party must submit its list of watchers to the Office of Elections, or Clerk’s Office in county elections by:

Primary Election: July 29, 2020
General Election: October 24, 2020

Poll watchers must be registered voters in the State of Hawaii.


  • No parent, spouse, reciprocal beneficiary, child, or sibling of a candidate may serve as a poll watcher in any precinct in which votes may be cast for the candidate.
  • No candidate for any elective office may serve as a poll watcher in the same election in which the person is a candidate.
  • No candidate who failed to be nominated in the primary or special primary election may serve as a poll watcher in the following general election.

Duties and Responsibilities

Poll watchers observe the conduct of the election at the polling place or early walk-in location during hours of operation. They may not interfere with the activities of any voter or precinct official.

There may be only one poll watcher per party in a polling area at a time. A designated alternate poll watcher may relieve another poll watcher as long as there is no more than one watcher per party at a precinct.

At the polling place, the precinct chairperson will request ID to enter the polling place, and the poll watcher will be given identification stating the watcher’s name and political party.

The poll watcher may turn the pages of the poll book upon receiving permission from the precinct chairperson. The precinct chairperson shall grant permission at times when there are reasonable breaks in voting activity.

Poll watcher may not use the polling place telephone or their personal telephone within 200 feet of the polling place.

Any violations of election laws observed in the precinct should be reported to the precinct chairperson, or to the respective clerk of the early walk-in location. If the precinct chairperson fails to correct a violation, the poll watcher may appeal to the chief election office.

For complete information, please refer to HRS §§ 11-72 and 11-77.

Information is available in alternate formats. If you require special assistance call the Office of Elections at 808-453-VOTE (8683). Neighbor Islands may call toll free 1-800-442-VOTE (8683) or e-mail us at [email protected]