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The Republican Party of Texas' Efforts To Purge Voters From The Voter Rolls
The gray area of voter roll maintenance and how the GOP uses voter roll purges for electoral manipulation.
It is always a good idea to check your voter registration to ensure you are still registered.
This weekend, the Republican Party of Texas held their quarterly meeting, and during one of their presentations, the presenter spoke about the efforts to purge voters from the voter rolls.
The presenter is a member of the Dallas County Republican Party, and she talks about how they have been downloading the voter rolls of all of the urban counties in Texas. She talks about how they have an IT guy who is a
carpetbagger California refugee helping them with their project.
What the Dallas County Republican Party has been doing is finding all of the infrequent voters (likely Democrats) and knocking on their doors. If they don’t answer and confirm that they live there and are registered to vote, the County Party submits their names to the Dallas County Election Administrator’s office as someone who has moved, then have their names purged from the voter rolls. She further said someone else will vote for them if the infrequent voter isn’t removed from the polls.
According to the presenter, the Dallas County Republican Party has successfully purged 25,000 to 40,000 voters. She encouraged every County Party to follow their voter oppression model. You know, just in time for the 2024 elections since Democrats typically only vote in presidential years. (Stop doing that.)
The mass effort to disenfranchise and purge Democrats from the voter rolls began in 2020 in Harris County and was orchestrated by Senator Paul Bettencourt and Representative Valoree Swanson.
I initially covered this on my old blog in 2022 (Harris County GOP Actively Disenfranchising Democrats And Disabled). Still, it’s a good time to revisit since their purging efforts were a success and have now spread to other parts of the state.
On July 1, 2022, Harris County Officials warned residents of a scam group impersonating election workers, going door-to-door to get people to sign affidavits that they live at the address. The group was calling themselves the “Texas Election Network.”
That same month, a Houston County Republican operative leaked emails showing who was involved, how this group works, and the lengths they’re going to disenfranchise Democratic voters. Some of the emails were written after Harris County officials issued that warning.
The emails were given to Harris County authorities, who have still not taken legal action against the players involved but rejected the thousands of voter challenges the group submitted to the County Clerk.
These emails show how the effort to purge voter rolls was not only directly from Harris County Republicans but also the lengths they went to target Democrats and disabled people specifically.
The first leaked email comes from Harris County GOP Training Director Bill Ely. He thanked the volunteers for attending the training of what they’re calling the “Texas Election Integrity Project.” They asked volunteers to work 20+ hours a week, but they had limited funds they could pay. However, they want the volunteers to submit a W9 to get paid.
The second email comes from Harris County GOP Precinct Chair 13, Dell Holmsley. It was a follow-up to an email by Harris County GOP Chair Cindy Siegel. It listed the tasks they are having the volunteers do regarding the “Election Integrity Project.” Those tasks included:
Print each declaration form(s) (attached).
As you canvass, please try 3-4 times before you give up on a specific address. If they never answer the door, please reply via email or phone so we can record that we attempted.
Upon completing a declaration form (write legibly, completing as much of the form as possible), please scan or take a picture of each form and return it to me (email or phone is acceptable).
Retain the hard copy declaration as we coordinate the time and location for a final affidavit.
You will be contacted to schedule a time and location for a notarized affidavit. When you come to do that, please bring the physical declarations.
We also got a copy of the list.
The list was not redacted, but I redacted it to protect the voter’s personal information. Again, this was forwarded to the proper Harris County authorities when it happened.
The list showed they only targeted registered voters who voted in Democratic elections. The declaration forms are the same forms seen in the KHOU story regarding the group impersonating election workers.
Holmsley instructed the email recipient to go to each house on the list 3-4 times and make a record if they never answered their door. They are doing this because they intend to challenge every voter who doesn’t answer the door with the county election’s office and have that person purged from the voter rolls.
This is exactly what the presenter at yesterday’s Republican Party of Texas meeting claimed they were doing in Dallas County and how they managed to disenfranchise 25,000 to 40,000 people.
Again, checking your voter registration to ensure you are still registered is always a good idea.
Contact your local county elections office immediately if you have been purged from the voter rolls.
Here’s a video of Republican Valoree Swanson talking about how Alan Vera had people work on election integrity from home to clean up the voter rolls. (Note: Alan Vera died earlier this year at the Capitol in Austin while testifying in favor of voter suppression bills.)
This disenfranchisement effort was something the Harris County Republican Party did in 2020 and 2022. The Harris County GOP found every Democrat who checked the disability box and had their volunteers comb through those voters’ social media. If they see people on social media who have selected disabled on their voting registration but don’t look disabled, they try to get them purged from the voter rolls and indicted on fraud.
As mentioned, one of their lists of disabled voters was attached to one of the emails. I’ve blacked out all personal information. As you can see, they only targeted disabled voters who voted in the Democratic Party.
Another 2020 email from Alan Vera showed how they were looking for Democrats who were disabled but “didn’t look disabled.”
According to Vera’s email, State Senator Paul Bettencourt, notorious for his disenfranchising efforts, was also involved in this plot. Although, it didn’t say to what extent.
Below is the PowerPoint presentation attached to the email, which is supposed to be a handy-dandy guide to help the Texas Election Network Volunteers purge Democrats and disabled people from the voter rolls.
Here is the “Voter Registration Challenge” that they went door-to-door with:
The Harris County Republican Party’s disenfranchisement effort through voter rolls is now being replicated throughout the state.
Is what they are doing illegal? It’s a gray area because of Texas’ election laws regarding voter roll upkeep. However, if they show up at the homes of Democrats and represent themselves as anything besides members of the Republican Party, it might be considered election fraud.
Election Administration offices in every county should be aware of these efforts and reject the challenges to the voter rolls, just like Harris County did last year. However, it’s important to remember that smaller counties may have a Republican Election Administrator who is just as eager to purge rolls and hand a victory to their party.
Always check your voter registration in the months leading up to the election. Remember that registration ends 30 days before each election, so if you have to re-register, then make sure to give yourself enough time.
The only way to fix this is for the Texas Legislature to write a law preventing local partisan groups from challenging tens of thousands of voter registrations. Please bring it up at your next town hall or meet and greet.
We have the ability to flip Texas, but we need to vote in numbers so high that they can’t cheat.