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Guinn files suit over Constable Precinct 2 runoff

I doubt it’ll make any difference, but it’s his right.

Zerick Guinn

The loser of the Democratic runoff for Harris County Precinct 2 constable has sued winner Chris Diaz, contesting the election result.

Zerick Guinn said he thought a recount he requested in the race would have involved a more thorough investigation, and said he filed the suit to get the clarity he has been seeking since an Election Day mistake in the County Clerk’s office incorrectly showed him to be comfortably ahead when, in fact, he was behind. Guinn lost to Diaz by 17 votes.

“I filed it just to make sure the vote tallies were correct and that the people of the precinct get to choose who they want for constable,” Guinn said Monday. “I’m not looking for anything other than the truth.”

The Precinct 2 patrol sergeant’s suit claims some Diaz supporters were ineligible to vote, were fraudulently or improperly registered, or cast mail ballots improperly. It also alleges some of his own supporters were not allowed to vote or that their votes were not counted “as a result of fraud, illegal conduct or mistake.”

See here, here, and here for some background on the irregularities and the recount process. We’ve seen some races decided by razor-thin margins in recent years – I’m specifically thinking of the Vo/Heflin race of 2004 and the Howard/Neil race of 2010 – and despite allegations of widespread fraud and other malfeasance in each, very few actual problems were found during the election contests. Those that were found were pretty much all honest mistakes, and they generally benefited the loser about as often as they helped the winner. I’ll be quite surprised if anything is different here. As such, I tend to agree with the assessment of Diaz’s attorney Buck Wood, who said that the 17-vote margin in this race would be a tough obstacle to overcome.

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