Judge Lowry Orders New Election for Gray-Jones Court at Law Race

Kaufman County Elections Department will hold a new election for the County Court at Law judgeship on July 21, 2018 as ordered by Judge Martin Lowry in Tracy Lyn Booker Gray v. Hon. Dennis Jones, in the District Court of Kaufman County, Texas, 422nd Judicial District, No. 99505-422.

The lawsuit focused on two issues: 1) whether the votes of provisional voters attempting to register online through the Department of Public Safety should be counted; and 2) whether alleged “voter harvesting” impacted the election.

The State of Texas does not currently have online voter registration through the Department of Public Safety (“DPS”) website. To complete the registration begun online through DPS, a voter must print the voter application and submit the application either in-person or by mail to the DPS. Kaufman County must follow the current laws of Texas and the instructions for elections, registration, and voting set forth by the Texas Secretary of State. Applying such law and instructions, Kaufman County could not accept the votes of these unregistered voters.

A federal law suit decision that occurred on April 3, 2018, after the March 6, 2018, election ruled Texas law is in violation of the Federal Motor Voter Act because Texas does not allow voter registration online through the DPS website. Until Texas implements this ruling, Kaufman County is bound by current Texas laws and regulations. Judge Lowry found the votes of the provisional voters that attempted to register online through the DPS website must be counted.

Judge Lowry heard the testimony of witnesses and a handwriting expert regarding the allegations of “voter harvesting.”

Judge Lowry ruled that 6 votes were obtained by invalid means and should not be counted. At the conclusion of the trial, Judge Lowry calculated the total number of undervotes to be between 3-4 votes. As such, a winning candidate could not be determined.

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