Tarrant County

Probate Court Candidate Goodman’s Fuzzy Math

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Catherine Goodman is using some fuzzy math to manipulate the results of the Tarrant County Bar Association (TCBA) Survey to declare herself the highest rated candidate. Goodman is the candidate for Judge, Probate Court 1 that almost didn’t make it on the ballot. She had to withdraw her application for a place on the ballot and reapply. Inside sources say this was due to problems with her petition signatures. Goodman has also struggled with her campaign finance compliance, as reported by Direct Action Texas. Now it looks like Goodman has chosen to manipulate the results of the TCBA Survey to boost her chances.

The Tarrant County Bar Association asked its members to rate each candidate as well qualified, qualified, or not qualified. If they didn’t know the candidate, they were instructed to answer, “No Opinion.” At first glance, Mark Sullivan has the highest rating with 25% well qualified versus Goodman’s 23.1% well qualified. If you look at the raw number of votes, Sullivan is still ahead with 151 well qualified to Goodman’s 139.

Goodman would like you to throw out the “No Opinion” votes and recalculate the percentages. That would skew the numbers in her favor, giving her 54% for well qualified to Sullivan’s 51%. However, that method is statistically insignificant. Remove the “No Opinion” vote and you are suddenly comparing apples to oranges. The results cannot be compared when there is now a different number of people voting in each candidate’s survey. If you wanted to properly discount the “No Opinion” voters you would have to compare the categories individually, as shown here. Those numbers still put Mark Sullivan on top.

Perhaps the more interesting numbers are not those of Goodman and Sullivan, but those of Patricia Cole. With 117 votes for “Not Qualified,” no matter which way you calculate it, she has the highest number in that category.

Catherine Goodman had difficulties following the law when applying for a position on the ballot, disregarded campaign finance laws, and is now manipulating results to show them in her favor. On the campaign trail she says she writes the law and that she knows the law, but can she follow the law?

State Law: Separation of Campaign and State

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According to Facebook photos, Tarrant County Commissioner Roy Brooks’ campaign appears to be using county vehicles for campaign purposes.

The photos show Brooks’ Executive Assistant, Leon Polk, driving and posing with a county vehicle with campaign signs attached. We know that one was used in the 2018 MLK Day Parade in Downtown Fort Worth. The other, based on the date and location of the photo, was presumably used in the 2016 Juneteenth celebration. All elected officials should know that anything publicly funded cannot be used for campaigning. Elected officials must separate campaign and state–public resources cannot be used for campaign purposes.

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A Costly Contribution

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Probate Court 1 candidate Catherine Goodman exceeded the amount for a contribution by twice the legal limit. Now that contribution may cost her up to $55,000 plus legal fees, should her opponents decide to pursue the violation.

Judicial candidates have to follow stricter guidelines than other candidates for office. For instance, they have limits on how much money they may accept from an individual. This fact is well known among judicial candidates. According to Election Code 253.155, in a county-wide judicial race in Tarrant County, the contribution limit is $5,000 per individual. A recent Campaign Finance Report (CFR) shows that one candidate exceeded that limit. Catherine Goodman, candidate for Judge in Tarrant County’s Probate Court 1, accepted a contribution twice that of the legal limit!

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You Had One Job Tarrant County GOP

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The results of the race for Justice of the Peace Precinct 3 could be determined by the failures of a County Chair and his staff. A judge will now decide which of the candidates in this race will remain on the ballot.

Precinct 3 incumbent, Justice of the Peace Russell Casey, filed suit against Tarrant County Republican Chairman Tim O’Hare, claiming O’Hare violated Election Law when he denied Casey’s petition to have his challengers removed from the ballot. According to Casey, the Tarrant County GOP (TCGOP) did not properly complete William “Bill” Brandt’s and Leonard “Lenny” Lopez’s petition signature paperwork for ballot access.

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Harrison County Brings Current OAG Investigation Count to Three!

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Direct Action Texas has been notified that investigators with the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) have been spotted in Harrison County. This brings the total number of ongoing investigations due to DAT complaints of vote irregularities to three separate counties.

Last year ,  Direct Action Texas found that 19.29% of all the votes in the Hill County Republican primary lacked voters to correspond with the alleged votes. Those ballots have been seized by the AG’s office and an investigation is ongoing.

The Tarrant County investigation has been described as the largest voter fraud investigation the state has seen. Mr. Harris, the executive director of DAT, claimed that numerous elected officials in Tarrant County, including a state representative, have been involved in what is referred to as a vote harvesting operation. DAT’s investigation has uncovered tens of thousands of these harvested ballots. The operation is similar to the activities uncovered in Hidalgo and Cameron Counties back in 2011-12. That investigation resulted in numerous felony convictions. While the Tarrant County operation is similar to that of the valley, the scope is much larger.

Late in 2016,  DAT received a tip of vote harvesting in Harrison County, located in far East Texas. After a brief investigation, DAT referred it to the Secretary of State, who referred it to the OAG. Earlier this week, agents from the OAG were spotted around Harrison County, including the county elections office.

“The fact that our work has resulted in three ongoing investigations makes me proud of our team and the quality of our work, ” said Aaron Harris. “We are not aware of any organization who has uncovered this much election fraud, much less in such a short period of time. To those committing these crimes – the gig is up, ” he continued.

DAT is currently investigating vote harvesting in  Dallas County, which has already uncovered the involvement of both currently and previously elected officials. “This investigation is very promising and appears that it may be our largest investigation yet.”

Stay tuned.

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