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Abbott Requests Investigation into Alleged Voter Suppression

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Governor Greg Abbott | Image by Montinique Monroe/Getty Images

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Gov. Greg Abbott has asked for an investigation into allegations of widespread voter suppression in Republican precincts during last week’s midterm elections.

“I’m calling for an investigation into the widespread problems with the Harris County elections last Tuesday,” the governor explained on Twitter. “The allegations of election improprieties in our state’s largest county may result from anything ranging from malfeasance to blatant criminal conduct.”

“Integrity in the election process is essential,” Abbott continued. “Voters in Harris County deserve to know what happened.”

The announcement came after accusations that the Democrat-controlled county intentionally failed to provide enough paper ballots to historically Republican polling locations to ensure Democrat incumbent County Judge Lina Hidalgo was reelected.

Hidalgo had been embroiled in controversy prior to the election, with several of her staffers recently being indicted for allegedly rigging the bidding process to award an $11 million contract to fellow Democrat colleagues.

Harris County Republican Chairman Cindy Siegel alleged that “polls weren’t set up in time.”

“We had machines all during the day that didn’t work, never worked, we had scanners that didn’t work, we had understaffed election polls,” she said.

In addition, she added, “And then the grand finale was the fact that we had polls that did not have paper.”

In response, Siegel explained, “We notified the election administrator, Cliff Tatum, at 10:30 in the morning that we had one poll close to running out of paper.”

When a staffer was sent to the county offices to get more paper, Siegel said, “He was told, no, they’ve got sufficient paper.”

Siegel continued, “We had people calling us constantly from our polls, saying ‘We’re almost out of paper, we are running out of paper, we have run out of paper,’ and ‘They have had to turn away people from voting.'”

Siegel suggested that roughly 20 polling locations had run out of paper by mid-afternoon. She noted that “19 out of those polls were Republican polls.”

Alternatively, reports from eyewitnesses at historically Democrat polling locations claimed that “they had thousands of pieces of paper that could be used for the ballot.”

The party has since filed a lawsuit detailing the allegations of “ill-advised and illegal alterations of election procedures.” Republican State Sen. Paul Bettencourt, who represents sections of Harris County, suggested that the Legislature would take action on the matter.

“Voter suppression is everything that everybody talks about in politics, but it happened here in the nation’s third-largest county, and so now we’re going to have to write laws to make sure it never happens again,” Bettencourt continued.

Siegel also pointed back to the primary elections, which saw considerable difficulties that eventually culminated in the elections official, Isabel Longoria, resigning. Chairman Siegel suggested, “We saw eight months ago in the primaries how badly they were run by Harris County.”

Harris County elections have had problems in the past. An audit in 2020 “revealed serious breaches of proper elections records management.”

Harris County Democratic Party Chair Odus Evbagharu denied the allegations. He asserted, “The claim that there were thousands and thousands of people who were disenfranchised, there’s no claim to that.”

“There’s no proof of that,” he reiterated.

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Bret
Bret
13 days ago

The first explanation is there is no proof. The second will be not enough votes to change the outcome. The third will be it’s too late.

Bill Fox
Bill Fox
13 days ago

Bahahahaha! Great, Captain Wheelchair is going to continue his tenure of not solving real issues like fixing our power grid. Thanks, dude. You are doing a bang up job at accomplishing nothing.

Maybe LT Gov. Dan should offer up more money for finding voter fraud. Oh, wait. He already did with little success.

Let’s keep pushing voter fraud conspiracy theories though.

Anna
Anna
12 days ago

Kudos to Governor Abbott for investigating voter fraud in the Houston area. Of course that county is filled with dumocraps!! I’d bet my life that you will NEVER read about Republicans committing fraud in elections!! That’s a dumocraps battle cry!! Don’t ever forget it!!

Bob McCranie
Bob McCranie
12 days ago

Abbott is a horrible Governor but apparently that’s all Texas wants anymore. We’ve given up on trying to get better. It could have been worse, and in the next few years we’ll find out how much worse that really could be.