Governor Considers New Election After Paper Ballot Issue

Governor Considers New Election After Paper Ballot Issue

( – The integrity of elections has come under increasingly heightened scrutiny in the last few years. As a result, officials are discovering several problems with some voting systems across America. One of the more severe instances of election irregularities recently happened in Texas. Governor Gregg Abbott (R-TX) posted a statement announcing a shortage of paper ballots in one of the state’s counties. He wrote that the issue was much worse than anticipated, adding that officials may need to hold a new election to remedy the situation.

Paper Shortage

A Local news station, KHOU 11, recently analyzed the voting equipment in Harris County. The investigators also looked into the voter turnout records. What they found is concerning. According to the local agency, the paper shortage may have more significant implications than initially thought, as it was more widespread than originally believed.

KHOU 11 sifted through county records and discovered that 121 polling centers in the area didn’t receive enough paper ballots to sufficiently cover the number of voters. According to their report, the county gave each of these voting centers only about 600 paper ballots. However, that wasn’t enough, as many came up short by hundreds of votes.

The network provided examples of the shortage. For example, Salyards Middle School had 1,037 ballots cast on election day. Warner Elementary School 990, and the Bellaire Civic Center received 946 votes.

The news station launched its investigation after Harris County looked at the issue and determined the exact number of locations the shortage affected was inconclusive, claiming that roughly 46 to 68 sites ran out of paper ballots.

The local outlet also mentioned how the county used historical data to determine how much paper to send to each polling place. However, KHOU 11 found an issue there as well. Looking back to 2018, three locations reported having well over 1,000 ballots cast. Yet, in 2022 they only received 600 paper ballots, less than half of the votes counted in some areas, such as the Faith American Lutheran Church, where officials tallied 1,549 ballots.

What’s to Come

According to Newsweek, the Texas Secretary of State’s office said it first heard about the shortage shortly after Election Day. Officials also confirmed the office referred the information to the state’s attorney general and the Harris County District Attorney.

Governor Abbott said the county might have to hold another election, claiming the shortage was so widespread it could’ve seriously changed the outcome of the area’s elections. He said that either way, the state will implement new laws to address the problem and ensure it doesn’t happen in the future.

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