HOUSTON, August 2, 2019 – Harris County Republican Party Chairman Paul Simpson issued the following statement regarding the County Clerk’s adoption of countywide voting centers in the November 2019 election instead of the longstanding precinct-based Election Day model:
“All Harris County voters benefit from convenient and readily accessible voting locations; and because every vote should count equally, all voters benefit by maintaining election integrity. That is why we appreciate the good work of the Secretary of State to require the Democrat County Clerk show her countywide voting center scheme meets the law – so it does not do more harm than good.
“As the nation’s third-largest county, Harris County poses unique challenges for countywide voting centers that smaller counties use. Every electronic poll book in every countywide voting center must update in real time so people can vote only once. In the very-low-turnout May 2019 election, the Harris County Republican Party documented that the poll books used in voting centers did not update in a timely manner.
“Currently, the County Clerk’s electronic poll book system may not be ready for what could be one of the largest simultaneous voting operations in the nation in November 2020. Furthermore, shrinking the number of polling locations as a band-aid to make that system work would defeat its stated purpose and make voting less accessible to voters.
“We thank the Secretary of State for recognizing the challenges in using election day countywide voting centers in Harris County by requiring better communication and electronic records so the Democrat Clerk shows that her voting center equipment is ready for prime time in November 2020 – which will likely be the largest turnout Harris County has ever seen. We will remain vigilant, as should all voters, to ensure the County Clerk’s voting center electronic poll books actually comply with the law.”
The Harris County Republican Party remains engaged on election integrity issues. Chairman Simpson recently spoke out against a proposal by the Harris County Clerk to move towards a “joint primary,” saying the proposal would empower government bureaucrats, let one party's workers run the other party's primary election that selects its candidates, and run the risk of disenfranchising, inconveniencing, and confusing voters. Click to view the full story in the Houston Chronicle.