Election 2012

It's Against the Law To Give Free Stuff to Voters

That free cup of coffee might ... nobody even knows. There's a law, though!

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Business owners beware: Offering a discount or a freebie to voters Tuesday is illegal. But despite a clear federal ban on such activities, they've only proliferated in recent years.

A Washington D.C. yoga studio is offering 10 percent off for showing an "I Voted" sticker. An oyster bar is offering free shellfish and a drink. Coffee chain Tim Horton's, which is based in Canada but has stores in several U.S. states, promised a free donut with the purchase of a coffee. Einstein Bagels promised voters a free bagel. A California hot dog restaurant is offering a free frankfurter.