Attorneys and poll watchers will be at voting sites and manning war rooms in nearly every state, looking at almost every aspect of the voting process and prepared act if they see something that they feel could hurt their candidate or cause.

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WASHINGTON — Fearing massive voter fraud and questionable vote counting, Republicans, Democrats and interest groups are all taking the unusual step of dispatching armies of lawyers in this non-presidential election year to ward off potential trouble at the polls.

“I’ve never seen anything like it for a midterm,” said Hilary Shelton, director of the NAACP’s Washington bureau. “It does look much more consistent with issues that we address in (presidential) elections. For a midterm election, it’s extraordinary. But this is an extraordinary time.”

Attorneys and poll watchers will be at voting sites and manning war rooms in nearly every state, looking at almost every aspect of the voting process and prepared act if they see something that they feel could hurt their candidate or cause.

The federal government also plans to be watching, as the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division will send lawyers to several states. For the 2016 election, the department dispatched more than 500 employees to 67 jurisdictions in 28 states. The department has not detailed specific plans for this year.

Massive displays of legal force are common in presidential election years, but the large presence of attorneys in this year’s midterm election effort is unprecedented, several experts said.

The legal maneuvering is already underway. Voting rights and civil rights groups have filed lawsuits in the past week charging Georgia authorities with rejecting a disproportionate number of absentee ballots and with discrimination in verifying new voter registrations.

A second dispute centers on nearly 53,000 voter registrations that have been placed on a pending list because they do not satisfy an “exact match” requirement with a person’s Georgia driver license or Social Security card. The state’s Republican-controlled general assembly last year approved the exact match requirement.

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, a Republican who is running against Democrat Stacey Abrams for governor, has defended his stewardship of the election. He says the voting issue is a manufactured crisis created by Abrams.

National Democratic and Republican Party officials declined to comment on their Election Day legal strategies other than to say they will be ready for whatever happens.

But some numbers show the emphasis that the parties and outside groups are putting on potential legal action this election cycle.

The NAACP, the Brennan Center of Justice at New York University School of Law, and Common Cause are partnering with the liberal-leaning Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, which says it has 4,000 attorneys who have volunteered to work the elections.

Some of those lawyers will man a nationwide voter hotline and local call centers on Election Day in key states like Florida, Georgia and Texas, said Marcia Johnson-Blanco, co-director of the committee’s Voting Rights Project.

Others will be dispatched to 28 states that include California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas.

“This is going to be a midterm where operations are going to be on par with what we do in a presidential year, given the amount of voter interest,” Johnson-Blanco said.

The National Bar Association, the nation’s oldest network of African-American lawyers and judges, says it expects to have over 700 volunteer attorneys on the ground keeping an eye on elections and prepared to take legal action if necessary.

“We’re going to focus on those states that have contentious elections,” National Bar Association President Joseph Drayton said. “Georgia is certainly on the list as well as other states.”

Conservative groups are lawyering up for the elections, too. The Republican National Lawyers Association will have conducted 50 election law training sessions nationwide by Election Day.

From those sessions, more than 1,200 lawyers and volunteers will be prepared to work in their states on Nov. 6, according to Michael Thielen, the association’s executive director.

Thielen said lawyers trained by the association will be paying particular attention to states like Pennsylvania and Florida for voter fraud.

“Election processes should not be held hostage by election officials of one party, nor should lawyers, with last-minute litigation, try to change clearly written rules and procedures enacted to ensure that only legitimate votes are cast and counted,” Thielen said in an email.

The wave of lawyers is the legacy of Bush v. Gore. The 2000 presidential contest between then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush and Vice President Al Gore came down to a 537-vote margin in Florida, weeks of court battles. The Supreme Court ultimately decided in Bush’s favor.

“In 2000, the country realized … that the game might go into overtime without knowing who had won,” said Justin Levitt, associate dean for research at Los Angeles’ Loyola Law School and a former Justice Department deputy assistant attorney general in the civil rights division under President Barack Obama. “The parties organized for that quite quickly after the election.”

Levitt said that led both parties to be prepared for election problems before, during and after ballots are cast.

“Most of this isn’t heading into court on Election Day,” he said. “Most of this is watching, answering questions, being able to talk to election officials. Sometimes, the county officials running things don’t know about an individual problem at one of their polling places, and this is one way of getting that information quicker.”