Local Elections

Shocking Video – School District Electioneers at Early Voting Parties

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“A joint investigation by Direct Action Texas and Empower Texans reveals Lancaster ISD employees advocated for a tax rate proposition at “back to school” parties inside polls.”

Article by Erin Anderson of Empower Texans

“A North Texas school district used controversial, and possibly illegal, tactics to help ensure passage of a property tax rate proposition that will result in more tax revenue for the district and higher tax bills for taxpayers.

A joint investigation by Direct Action Texas and Empower Texans took a look at “back-to-school” parties for parents held inside campus polling locations in Lancaster Independent School District. The parties were on the same day, at the same time, and at the same schools as the early voting polls.

Lancaster ISD used what’s called “rolling polling” during early voting for its August 25 tax ratification election, moving polling locations to different district campuses each day.

Early voting began on August 8, the day after district teachers and staff returned to campus. Back-to-school parties coordinated with early “mobile voting” sites were held August 13-18.

Tony Ortiz of Empower Texans and Robert Montoya of Direct Action Texas visited three campuses during their rolling polling parties — Rosa Parks Millbrook Elementary, George Washington Carver, and Lancaster Middle School — and recorded what they saw on video.

School employees in the video admit the parties were held to get parents to vote. The parties gave free food to parents. The parties were held at schools, on taxpayer-funded government property. At each polling location visited, multiple school employees said on video to vote for the tax rate proposition.

State law makes it illegal for school districts to use taxpayer resources for electioneering. And government employees at work are prohibited from telling voters how to vote in an election.

The video shows what look like violations of both statutes:

 

And no person in Texas can electioneer to voters inside a polling location. They must be 100 feet away from the entrance to the building where the poll is located.

School employees appear to have violated those limits as well. They electioneered inside the polls and on the taxpayer’s dime.

The district’s questionable tactics paid off. Lancaster ISD voters approved the tax swap 62-38 percent, with a dismal 2.5 percent voter turnout. In-person early voters, including those who cast ballots at the early voting parties, voted for the tax swap proposition by a 269-65 margin. Election Day voters, who cast ballots at a local library, were more closely divided, 124-100.”

Grassroots Coalition Calls Upon Governor Abbott to Verify Voter Citizenship

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DAT Calls Upon Governor Abbott to Begin Verifying Citizenship in the Voter Registration Process.

Requests Gov. Abbott take executive action, issue an administrative order, and mandate citizenship verification for voter registration by the Secretary of State.

 (North Richland Hills, TX) A Texas Grassroots Coalition sent a letter to the Governor and help a press conference today demanding the Governor direct the Secretary of State to verify citizenship of voter registrations. Below are Aaron Harris comments as well as a copy of the letter send to Governor Abbott.

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Court Rules Against Plano in Harrison Case

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Today the 401st District Court Ruled in favor of Tom Harrison, canceling the scheduled recall election against him.

Earlier this year democrats and city officials sought to recall Tom Harrison from the City Council. They used as their motive a controversial Facebook post by Mr. Harrison, however the real motivation is Mr. Harrison’s insistence on being a conservative voice on council and refusing to simply rubber stamp the wishes of the mayor and city manager. A recall petition was carried out, however they used an erroneous calculation for the number of signatures needed to gain ballot access.

At issue was whether one needed to use the “last” election turnout or some other nebulous random election’s turnout as the basis for calculating the number of signatures needed. The city chose to use a 2015 election turnout numbers instead of the most recent election turnout.

In the ruling the presiding judge stated “The Court finds based on clear and convincing evidence the the word “last” is included” [in the City charter]. During the trial Mr. Harrison’s attorneys uncovered multiple different versions of the city charter, causing confusion as to which was the accurate copy.

Mr. Harrison’s attorney, Art Martinez DeVara stated he was very pleased with the decision by the court. Mr. DeVara was particularly pleased that the judge disallowed the city from adding to the charter by “interpretation”, as using the 2015 election numbers was a “creative” interpretation the city was attempting to get away with.

By following the city charter and using the last election’s turnout as the basis for calculating how many signatures were needed for the petition to be valid, the petition against Tom Harrison came in short. The election is called off by the order.

Not only did the judge rule against the City of Plano, he also ordered the city to pay Mr. Harrison’s attorney’s fees within 30 days.

Congratulations Tom Harrison.

 

READ FULL COURT DECISION HERE.

DAT Files New Complaints: Kaufman County

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Direct Action Texas has just filed new complaints with the Secretary of State detailing 47 counts of election fraud in Kaufman County. Our filing comes shortly after a District Judge called for a new election for the Republican nomination for County Court at Law 1. Judge Marty Lowy nullified the original results where Judge Jones had won his race by only one vote, citing voter fraud as well as violations of Federal Law, according to a recent Federal Court ruling.

Several voters took the stand in the Election Contest. One elderly couple, who could not read nor write, said that they don’t recall ever filling out or signing an application for a ballot by mail. They believe that their “voting papers” just arrive in their mailbox. A woman took the stand and said she doesn’t remember voting since JFK, and if she had voted it would have been in the Democrat Primary. Her vote was actually cast in the Republican Primary. Some recognized their signatures, some did not. In one case a voter said, “it looks like someone tried to write like me.” The details of their testimony varied, but all of them had one thing in common. None of them knew for whom they voted. None of them could name a single person on their ballot. Someone else had voted in their name.

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DAT Files Judicial Complaint Against Kimberly Fitzpatrick

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Today Direct Action Texas filed a complaint with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct against Kimberly Fitzpatrick. This is the body which oversees both judges as well as judicial candidates.

Judicial candidates and judges are to abide by Canons of judicial conduct. They can be found HERE. Canon 5(2) reads: “A judge or judicial candidate shall not authorize the public use of his or her name endorsing another candidate for any public office”. Fitzpatrick has endorsed a candidate in a congressional race (whom I support as well) appearing on the same ballot with her in the primary and again in the runoff election.  Let’s be clear, Ron Wright, as a congressional candidate, has not committed a violation and has no reason to know the law for judicial candidates, rather it is Fitzpatrick who cannot give out her endorsement to others. Fitzpatrick touts her 8 years as an attorney and her legal prowess yet doesn’t seem to understand basic judicial ethics Canons. Read More

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