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Posts Tagged ‘Secretary of State’

HERO repeal hopefuls try another venue

Whatever. Conservative opponents of Houston’s equal rights ordinance have asked an appeals court to force the city secretary to certify the signatures on their petitions to force a repeal referendum on the November ballot. Equal rights ordinance critics filed a request late Monday with Houston’s 14th Court of Appeals for an emergency writ of mandamus […]

HERO repeal effort falls short

Too bad, so sad (not really). Opponents of Houston’s new non-discrimination ordinance did not get enough valid signatures to force a November repeal referendum, Mayor Annise Parker and City Attorney David Feldman announced Monday. “With respect to the referendum petition filed to repeal the ‘HERO’ ordinance, there are simply too many documents with irregularities and […]

What the Burnam case is about

I’m still not sure what to think about Rep. Lon Burnam’s electoral challenge against Ramon Romero in HD90. In a case that election officials statewide are monitoring — because it involves the use of electronic devices such as iPads — attorneys say enough ballots are in question to make a difference in the race Burnam […]

Burnam files challenge in HD90

This ought to be interesting. State Rep. Lon Burnam filed a lawsuit Monday challenging his 111-vote re-election loss earlier this month. Burnam, D-Fort Worth, said the goal of the lawsuit is to review data from the Texas House District 90 election “to determine if there were hundreds of illegally cast ballots.” “I believe I have […]

BGT fires back

Good for them. Allegations that Battleground Texas broke the law during its voter registration activities are “entirely without foundation,” the Democratic group wrote in a letter to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst on Tuesday. Dewhurst, citing a secretly recorded video of Battleground volunteers in Bexar County, had earlier called for a criminal investigation because of allegations […]

Yes, they fear what BGT is doing

Here’s the proof. While saying it had received no complaint against the Democratic group Battleground Texas, the office of Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry suggested Wednesday that the group’s voter registration practices might rise to a “potential level of offense” of state election law. Battleground Texas strongly disputes breaking any laws and said a […]

Wilson swears himself in

Of course he does. Days after a Harris County judge signed a temporary restraining order barring Houston Community College trustee-elect Dave Wilson from taking the oath of office, the perennial candidate submitted notarized documents to the state showing he has been sworn in. Wilson, 67, a small-business owner and anti-gay activist whose eligibility to serve […]

Who enforces voter registration requirements?

My guess upon reading this is in effect nobody. A combination of lax enforcement in the state’s election code, a faulty voter registration system and lack of leadership by state election officials have led to the disenfranchisement of thousands of Texans who faced challenges while registering to vote in the 2012 elections, according to a […]

Early voting wrapup: Did we run out of early voters?

Early voting is officially over, though a few more mail ballots will trickle in by tomorrow. Here are the final numbers, with the chart from Thursday being updated: 2013 2011 2009 2007 Here again is that look at turnout over the first ten days and last two days of early voting, now with this year’s […]

The problem with voter ID is more than just name matching

Cindy George is correct about what isn’t a problem with voter ID. The names on your voter registration card and your ID must match. For the most part. They will be considered the same if they’re “substantially similar.” There have been rumblings that married women might run into problems at the polls and be asked […]

Early voting starts today

Today we arrive at the more action-oriented part of the election cycle, in which voting actually happens. Early voting starts today and runs through next Friday, November 1. Here’s the schedule and map of locations for Harris County. Check with your County Clerk or Election Administrator for locations elsewhere. Hours for early voting this Monday […]

Still waiting for Perry to call the special election

Patti Hart reviews the bidding. On Tuesday, Jan. 8, your elected representative and senator will convene under the state Capitol’s distinctive pink granite dome in Austin for the first day of the 83rd session of the Texas Legislature. That is, unless you happen to live within the boundaries of Senate District 6, which until his […]

When will we have that special election in SD06?

Sylvia Garcia would like to know. Senate District 6 candidate Sylvia Garcia, today called on Governor Rick Perry to set an election date to fill the senate district seat as soon as possible. “This is a simple taxation without representation issue,” Garcia said. “The working families of our district, most of whom are Latino and […]

On voter confidence

There was one more interesting aspect to that poll of Harris County from last week, and it had to do with how confident voters were that the vote they cast would be counted. This KUHF story goes into that result. A new KUHF/KHOU poll shows that black voters aren’t as confident as other voters that […]

If no one owns the problem then no one will fix it

Reading this Chron story about the problem of voter registrations done via the Department of Public Safety, it’s clear why this is an ongoing issue. Neither the DPS nor the secretary of state tracks motor voter complaints. Nor can state officials say whether any individual offices or workers process abnormally low numbers of new drivers’ […]

Settlement reached in “dead voter” lawsuit

It’s something. A lawsuit by four registered voters alleging that the state of Texas was violating their civil rights by purging them from voter rolls has been dropped after the plaintiffs and the state reached an agreement. The Texas residents brought the suit after receiving letters from their county registrar indicating that the office had […]

The “dead voter” saga still has some life in it

Looks like I spoke too soon when I said that the “dead voter” purge story was over. Remember that lawsuit filed by four voters and the temporary injunction granted by a Travis County judge forbidding the Secretary of State from further instructing the counties to remove any other names from the voter rolls? On Friday, […]

Deal reached to restore SOS funding for Tax Assessor

This whole protracted standoff between Harris County Tax Assessor Don Sumners and the Secretary of State over the “dead voter” purge has apparently been the result of a misunderstanding. Harris County Judge Ed Emmett has brokered a deal with the Texas secretary of state to restore about $700,000 in funding the state had cut off […]

SOS ups the ante against Sumners

It’s getting real at the Tax Assessor’s office. Harris County election officials got a bit of a surprise Friday morning when they attempted to open the county’s spending account on the Texas Secretary of State’s office website and found their access blocked. State officials have temporarily cut off the county’s voter registration funding. “We received […]

SOS versus Sumners

It’s not a steel cage death match, but it’ll do. In a strongly worded letter today, the Texas Secretary of State’s office told Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector and Voter Registrar Don Sumners that his decision not to purge presumed-dead voters from the rolls before the Nov. 6 election likely violates the law and compromises the […]

Not dead yet

As they say, reports of their deaths have been greatly exaggerated. Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector Don Sumners said Monday that he would not purge from the voter roll before the November election any of the 9,018 citizens who received letters from his office in recent days notifying them that they may be dead and are […]

The ballot propositions we won’t have

Today is the 78th day before the November 6 election. That makes it the statutory deadline for ordering an election, as noted by the Secretary of State. They cite Sec. 201.054 of the Elections Code for this, which seems wrong to me; Sec. 201.051 appears to be more on point, though that still doesn’t specifically […]

We speak again of an elections administrator

As you know, I’ve been wondering when this might happen. Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart said he will ask the Texas Secretary of State’s Office to examine his office’s election processes after a “human error” in his office caused erroneous primary runoff election results to be posted online for hours last Tuesday. The error made […]

Voter ID trial, day one

And they’re off, with the state bringing the funny math as part of its case. A Justice Department lawyer, Elizabeth Westfall, argued that the law has the potential to prevent 1.4 million Texans from voting who are eligible but lack the required photo identification — a disproportionate number of them minorities. Previewing the case the […]

We apparently will have a candidate in SBOE1 after all

The Trib reviews the bidding on the Martha Dominguez situation in SBOE 1. According to the Texas Election Code, primary candidates have until 63 days before the primary election to apply to have their name withdrawn (this year it was March 12), and they must withdraw with “the authority with whom the withdrawing candidate’s application […]

You sure you’re registered?

Your voter registration could get cancelled without you realizing what’s happening. More than 300,000 valid voters were notified they could be removed from Texas rolls from November 2008 to November 2010 – often because they were mistaken for someone else or failed to receive or respond to generic form letters, according to Houston Chronicle interviews […]

Your voter registration card is in the mail

Someone was just asking me about this, so I’m glad to see that they’re on their way. Harris County officials prepared to ship out 1.7 million voter registration cards Tuesday – after an unprecedented nearly five-month delay resulting from a grilling court battle over redistricting. Across Texas, election officials are required to send out new […]

“Phantom” voters

This is a molehill, not a mountain. Sixteen small counties across Texas appear to have more registered voters on their rolls as of 2010 than qualified citizens of voting age – a phenomenon prompting conservative Washington, D.C., watchdog group to question whether the “overcounts” could raise the potential for election fraud. The Chronicle reviewed public […]

Why do we make it so hard to vote?

News item: Many voter registrations around the country are outdated or incorrect. Some 24 million voter registrations in the United States contain significant errors, including about 1.8 million dead people still on the rolls and many more approved to vote in multiple states, according to a report released Tuesday. Even though the inaccuracies impact one […]

Texas files suit to preclear voter ID

They’re a mighty busy bunch at the OAG these days. The Texas attorney general’s office today filed suit against U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice to have the state’s controversial voter ID law implemented without further delay. The law, Senate Bill 14 by state Sen. Troy Fraser, R-Horseshoe Bay, was scheduled […]

SOS sends voter registration info to DOJ

Took them long enough, not that I’m complaining. Two weeks after Texas’ voter ID law was scheduled to go into effect, the measure is back in the U.S. Department of Justice’s hands. The Texas secretary of state’s office on Thursday submitted its latest batch of data in hopes of satisfying the federal government’s request for […]

Your voter registration card is not in the mail just yet

Another side effect of the Supreme Court stay. Even if you’ve registered to vote in Texas, you won’t be getting a new voter registration certificate until February. Although the latest blue cards expired at the end of the year, counties are waiting to mail out new ones until a long legal battle over the state’s […]

Look out, here comes The Donald

Make of this what you will. Donald Trump supporters have met an official ballot deadline in Texas, paving the way for the business mogul to become a third-party candidate there, a source close to Trump tells The Blaze. Trump himself acknowledged the filing in a statement. According to an email sent by the source to […]

DOJ defers again on voter ID

In addition to the interim maps, we got some more good news yesterday. Texas provided “incomplete” information that does not enable federal officials to determine whether their proposed voter ID law would be discriminatory, the Justice Department said in a letter Wednesday. Essentially, the letter from DOJ Civil Rights Division Voting Section Chief T. Christian […]