27,000 Ballots in Texas Validate Security Laws

27,000 Ballots in Texas Validate Security Laws

27,000 Ballots in Texas Validate Security Laws

As I was busy driving around town, researching info for a new personal future today, I was contemplating if I was wasting my time and my gas.  Seriously, with the cost of everything going up, is NOW the time to start a new business?  Will WWIII come at us like a meteor in a Sci-Fi movie?  Will anything matter if we don’t survive the next few months, let alone another three years of The Bidenocolypse?  And then, I have the ghost of Rush Limbaugh in my head reminding me to be the happy warrior.  To not give in.  It ain’t over ’til it’s over.  We’re not losers until we admit defeat.  With that in mind, I smiled at the AP article out of Austin today: Texas flagged 27,000 mail ballots for rejection in the March 1st primary election.  The authors’ breathy assertions of voter suppression fly off the page like the dramatic ‘dun dun dunn’ in an old horror movie.  Yet instead, the news relays just how Texas’s (and other states) new mail in rules validate security laws passed since the 2020 election.

“It puts the rate of rejected mail ballots in Texas on track to significantly surpass previous elections. The preliminary figures — reported by Texas counties after votes were counted in the state’s March 1 primary — is the fullest picture to date of how new election rules rushed into place by Republicans following the 2020 election made it harder for thousands of voters in both parties. Some will wind up not having their ballots count at all.”

And… I’m waiting for someone to tell me how bad this is.  

First of all, given it’s been at least 18 months since the 2020 election, I hardly consider these measures “rushed into place.”  Rushed into place are the edicts handed down by Governors, unelected judges and voting officials in the days and weeks just shy of November of 2020.  All in the name of COVID.  

This pesky little detail is underscored in a subsequent paragraph where they point to the rejection rate in the last Presidential race.  In this year’s primary, the 27,000 ballots in question make up a rejection rate of roughly 17%, per their own assessment, affecting both parties and across 120 counties, big and small.

“Although the final number of discounted ballots will be lower, the early numbers suggest Texas’ rejection rate will far exceed the 2020 general election, when federal data showed that less than 1% of mail ballots statewide were rejected.”

One percent?  In one of the highest voter turnout rates ever recorded.  Something about that don’t smell right, and it doesn’t smell like teen spirit!

You know what else don’t smell right?  Overlooking 10,000 ballots!  Like, hmmm… I know I put those down somewhere…

From the AP article, they point out that 11,000 mail ballots had been flagged.  It’s amazing how that number dropped just a tad after they tripped over those missing votes, probably in crates underneath a table somewhere.  Oh wait, sorry, that was in Atlanta a couple years back…

“In Texas’ largest county, around Houston, Harris County officials said more than 11,000 mail ballots had been flagged for rejection as of March 2. But in the county’s preliminary report that is dated a day later, the number of rejected mail ballots was listed at 3,277. On Tuesday, Harris County Elections Administrator Isabel Longoria said she was stepping down following a bungled vote count.”

Look, I HATE, HATE the concept of mass mailing voter ballots.  It begs for fraud in a million little ways.  But I’d be lying if I said all mail in ballots should go.  I was grateful that my 85-year-old parents could still cast their conservative votes by requesting a ballot be sent to them.  Requested and justified being the operative words.  And my sister was grateful that she was afforded the opportunity to request a ballot be sent to her overseas while working for the DOD.  But given she’s a dyed in the wool democrat, I sure wasn’t crying that she failed to request it in time, and she forfeited her right to vote.  Any more than I’m crying for the fools who couldn’t figure out (or didn’t have) an identification number to verify their person when voting by mail in Texas.  If you can’t figure those details out, I’m not sure I want you voting anyway!

“New requirements include listing an identification number — either a driver’s license or a Social Security number — on the ballot’s carrier envelope. That number must match the county’s records. If a ballot is rejected, voters could add an ID number via an online ballot tracking system, go to the county’s election offices and fix the problem in person, or vote with a provisional ballot on election day.”

Hey AP, did you get that last little detail?  IF THE BALLOT IS REJECTED, THEY GIVE YOU THREE DIFFERENT WAYS TO CORRECT IT!  If you don’t bother (or can’t) figure that out… see my last editorial sentence above.

Additionally, the article mentions my own county tallies, in Williamson:

” In the booming suburbs of Austin, Williamson County had a final number of 521 rejected ballots, nearly evenly split evenly between Republican and Democratic primary voters.”

So… you mean the evenly split rejected votes that were going to cancel each other out anyway?  Whose vote was suppressed? 

Last but not least, it seems these new requirements didn’t generate the outrage AP was desperately hoping for.

“Kara Sands, the election administrator in Nueces County, said her office pressed voters to include more than one identification number as a guardrail against having their ballot rejected. But she said her office wasn’t inundated with voter frustration.  “We really didn’t get a lot of folks complaining about that,” she said.

Wanna know why?  Voters WANT election security.  All demographics and all political stripes have indicated a newfound distrust of the latest election outcomes.  We just want some reasonably sure way we can trust our votes are meaningful.  Election integrity is not a bad thing.  It’s the only thing that matters.

I was reminded of this just moments before I started writing this piece as I am almost done with Season 2 of Narcos Mexico.  The following video speaks volumes.  Fun fact, this was filmed in 2018.

Featured Image: “VOTE!!!” by srqpix is marked with CC BY 2.0. Cropped and modified.

 

 

 

 

 

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