Allegations of voter fraud in Harris County

August 24, 2010 4:48:09 PM PDT
Local election officials are keeping busy preparing for the November election, mainly because of bad voter registration applications. They don't believe it's an accident. The Harris County Voter Registrar says he's found thousands of voter applications filed in the last three months which are fraudulent. He calls this an attack on the voter rolls of Harris County.

Harris County Voter Registrar Leo Vasquez's office has pored through thousands of voter registration applications, discovering many questionable filings. Like some which appear to be the same person with the same date of birth filing six times on the same day. And that's not all...

Vasquez said, "We have evidence indicating violations of the Texas election code, falsified documents being submitted to this governmental office and possibly violations of federal election laws."

The investigation found 1,597 instances of multiple applications for the same voter, 1,014 applications for folks already registered to vote, 325 for teenagers who are too young to register and even 25 from folks who admitted on the application they are not even US citizens.

"My office has been forced to expend countless hours and thousands of dollars of taxpayer money trying to sift through the garbage being dumped into our voter registration system," Vasquez explained.

Vasquez says the applications were all gathered by paid deputies with the group Houston Votes. Of the 25,000 applications the group filed in the last three months, only 7,193 were actually for new voters.

Sean Caddle is the director of Houston Votes, which he says is a privately funded organization which signs up voters.

"I didn't do anything wrong. I ran a legitimate program," Caddle said. "What's the motivation behind anyone else? I don't know."

Caddle says he has fired 20 to 30 of his workers as a result of filing these fraudulent applications.

These allegations and the evidence collected by the voter registrar's office will be forwarded to the district attorney's office, the secretary of state and eventually possibly the attorney general's office.

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