Crime

Official and 3 others indicted on 134 Felonies in Mail-in Ballot Fraud case

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The office of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced 134 felony charges were filed against Gregg County Commissioner Shannon Brown and three co-defendants in connection to an alleged vote harvesting scheme involving a Democratic primary in 2018.

According to Paxton’s office, Brown and others targeted “young, able-bodied” voters to cast ballots by mail by fraudulently claiming the voters were “disabled,” in most cases without the voters’ knowledge or consent. The indictments claim this was done to increase the pool of ballots needed to swing the race in Brown’s favor.

In recent months, Paxton, a Republican, has led the charge in quelling vote-by-mail opportunities that he believes violates state law, citing those ballots are “specifically reserved for those who are physically ill and cannot vote in-person as a result.”

There is an ongoing court battle between Paxton and Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins involving the latter sending unsolicited vote-by-mail applications to more than two million registered voters.

“It is an unfortunate reality that elections can be stolen outright by mail ballot fraud. Election fraud, particularly an organized mail ballot fraud scheme orchestrated by political operatives, is an affront to democracy and results in voter disenfranchisement and corruption at the highest level,” said Paxton. “Mail ballots are vulnerable to diversion, coercion, and influence by organized vote harvesting schemes. This case demonstrates my commitment to ensuring Texas has the most secure elections in the country, and I thank the Gregg County Sheriff and District Attorney for their continued partnership. Those who try to manipulate the outcome of elections in Texas must be held accountable.”

The vote-by-mail issue has been prominently voiced by Pres. Trump, who went as far as admitting to blocking U.S. Postal Service funding to stop mail-in ballots.

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