Hats and clothing bearing the slogan “Make America Great Again,” or MAGA, will be allowed in polling places in California because they do not advocate specifically for any particular presidential candidate.
The Los Angeles Times pointed out the contradiction Thursday: supporters of Joe Biden cannot wear their campaign swag, most of which includes the candidate’s name, but Trump supporters can wear anything that says “MAGA.”
The Times cited state election officials, and regulations issued last month — which note that slogans like “Black Lives Matter” and “Build Back Better” would be allowed — just like MAGA and “Keep America Great” (KAG):
Prohibited materials and information include, but are not limited to:
- A display of a candidate’s name, likeness, or logo
- A display of a ballot measure’s number, title, subject, or logo
- Buttons, hats, pencils, pens, shirts, signs, or stickers containing information about candidates or issues on the ballot
- Any audible broadcasting of information about candidates or measures on the ballot
- Loitering near or disseminating visible or audible electioneering information near a vote-by-mail drop boxIt should be noted that a campaign slogan or a political movement slogan (or the initials representing the campaign or political movement) does not constitute electioneering under the legal definition of electioneering as stated above.Accordingly, the display of slogans on clothing, face coverings, and/or buttons is not prohibited.Examples of campaign slogans or political movement slogans include but are not limited to: Make America Great Again (MAGA), Black Lives Matter (BLM), Keep America Great (KAG), Vote for Science, and Build Back Better.
The Times noted that some local election officials are uncomfortable with the rules, adding that “no candidate has been more uniquely identified in modern times with a slogan than Trump.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.