March 8, 2022

Harris County GOP, RNC, and RPT Release Statement on Harris County Election Failures; Elections Administrator’s Resignation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 8, 2022
Harris County GOP, RNC, and RPT Release Statement on Harris County Election Failures; Elections Administrator’s Resignation
After Harris County GOP calls for her firing, Elections Administrator Isabel Longoria resigns effective July 1

HOUSTON – The Harris County GOP, Republican National Committee (RNC), and the Republican Party of Texas (RPT) have worked together during the fallout from the March 1 Primary Election failures in Harris County. Democrat County Judge Lina Hidalgo and her appointed Elections Administrator Isabel Longoria presided over systemic failures that threatened to disenfranchise voters in both parties and threatened the integrity of the election. In Commissioners Court today, Longoria submitted her resignation after the Harris County GOP filed a lawsuit with the goal of removing Longoria and her management team and implementing an independent elections overseer for the upcoming May and November elections.

Because Longoria’s resignation is not effective until July 1, the Harris County GOP is renewing its call for independent oversight of her office for the upcoming May 7 local elections and May 24 primary runoff. Harris County Republican Party Chairman Cindy Siegel released the following statement:

“Harris County is the third largest county in the country with the longest ballot nationwide – it’s critical that we get our elections right. The widespread problems in the Primary Election are inexcusable and due to the incompetence of Democrat leader Lina Hidalgo and her unelected, unqualified Elections Administrator Isabel Longoria. That’s why the Harris County GOP took action by filing a lawsuit, calling for Longoria to be fired or resign, and requesting the appointment of an independent elections overseer. While Longoria’s resignation today is a good first step, it is not the only step that the Harris County voter needs to see take place before the next election is held. Longoria cannot remain in place for the May 7 local elections or the May 24 primary runoff without independent oversight from either the court or the Secretary of State. Because she has resigned in place, independent oversight is needed immediately, independent of Harris County and the Harris County elections office.”  – Harris County GOP Chair Cindy Siegel

Among the many problems in this election, a 10,000-vote discrepancy was discovered because the popular Senate Bill 1 calls for transparency requirements in the vote count. RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel released the following statement regarding the election issues faced in Harris County:

“The RNC fully supports Texas Republicans holding Harris County Democrats accountable for their total incompetence in Texas’s recent primary elections. Following historic RNC investments in Texas election integrity, we saw huge increases in turnout with negligible issues reported at most polling locations – in other words, Senate Bill 1 made it easy to vote and hard to cheat. It’s no coincidence that the only county unable to successfully administer its election is run by Democrats.” – RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel

Republican Party of Texas Chairman Matt Rinaldi released the following statement on Democrats hypocrisy:

“Texas Democrats wasted their own constituents’ time by boycotting the Texas legislative session to decry commonsense election integrity efforts, only to end up unable to complete the most basic of tasks in running an election. Isn’t it ironic how the only people who screamed voter suppression are the same people unable to administer an election?” – RPT Chairman Matt Rinaldi

Background:

  • Harris County Democrats failed in ensuring the county’s Primary Elections were secure and transparent.
    • Several polling locations in Harris County did not open on time because the polling locations’ equipment was not working properly or not delivered in a timely manner. 
    • Several Republican and Democrat election workers resigned prior to Election Day frustrated due to lack of training and multiple election worker scheduling issues caused by the EA’s office.
    • Some Republican voters were unable to submit the second page of their ballot in many precincts. To resolve the issue, the unrecorded second page of ballots were duplicated to properly record those votes in the system. 
    • Other Republican voters reported not receiving the correct ballot and were disenfranchised, unable to vote in all races they were legally allowed to.
    • Republican election workers reported being given the incorrect ballot paper size creating a situation where not all voters’ paper ballots reported all the races they voted for.
    •  Late Saturday night, Harris County reported to the media and not either of the local parties that 10,000 mail-in ballots (6,000 Democrat and 4,000 Republican) had not been included in the final count despite testimony to a district court that the vote count was final.
    • As a result of the egregious mismanagement on Election Day, the Harris County GOP filed a lawsuit against Elections Administrator Isabel Longoria.
  • As Democrats push false narratives about election integrity nationwide, states like Texas have stepped up to show that these popular reforms are working.
  • In the first wave of major elections since Senate Bill 1 was signed into law a year ago the results shattered expectations.
    • Primary turnout increased from 2.56 million votes in 2018 to over 2.93 million in 2022.
    • In most Texas counties other than Harris County it was easier to vote and harder to cheat.
  • Democrats have been hyperbolic and dishonest about election integrity at every turn.
  • While Texas Democrats were skipping the legislative session and on vacation in Washington, D.C. and figures like Beto O’Rourke were falsely accusing Republicans of attempting to suppress Texas votes, Republicans were crafting a law that works.
  • The RNC made huge investments in Texas election integrity ahead of midterm primary day. The RNC engaged:
    • Over 2,400 poll workers at 900 locations in Texas, covering 100% of poll working shifts from early voting through to Election Day.
    • Over 10 RNC and RPT staffers were on the ground to assist with the operations.
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