November 27, 2004

The Heflin-Vo Election Contest

Here in Houston, we still have one State Senate race with an outcome still in question. Senator Talmadge Heflin is contesting the results of his race with Hubert Vo over on the west side of Houston. For those of you not familiar with the case, the final vote tally shows Vo with a 32 vote lead, while the Heflin campaign is raising issues regarding results from several Democrat precincts, specifically questioning whether or not a number of votes were legally cast in those precincts.

Let me offer a few disclaimers.

I know Heflin, though not well.

I know his campaign manager much better.

My wife taught and coached his granddaughter and I was always quite fond of the girl.

And I serve on the committee that trains GOP election judges and alternates, as well as some poll watchers. I know some of the precincts we have historically worried about with regard to voting irregularities have been in this district. Thus the questions raised don't surprise me.

Now I've not been involved in this case, but from what I have heard from my sources, there were several Democrat precincts in which they allowed individuals to vote who had moved outside the county. Such votes are invalid, no matter how you slice it. Similarly, there are a handful of voters (about two dozen) who cast ballots during both early voting and on election day. All totaled, there are about 250 questionable votes, more than enough to turn the tables in this election.

Now here is where the problem comes in. Whether you are talking about electronic ballots, punch card ballots or paper ballots with an X marked through a box, there is no way to go back and determine which ballot came from which voter -- nor should there be, as it would eliminate the secret ballot.

What are the options?

1) Seat the winner of the current count, even though the outcome is questionable. This means that the legitimate voters of the district may be disenfranchised by seating a man who probably got fewer of the legitimate votes and was pushed over the top by illegally cast ballots.

2) Seat Heflin, on the basis that most of those votes are from precincts that went heavily against him. This creates a serious question in terms of appearances, as well as never fully answering the question of who the legitimate winner is (after all, we can never know if those illegitimate votes were cast for Vo or Heflin?).

3) Follow state law in the matter and have a second election. If past history is any indication, Heflin will be stomped by Vo, as voters have historically voted against the person filing a contest when a new election is ordered (and it has been 10-15 years since one of these elections has been re-run).

Needless to say, none of the outcomes is desirable. And to be honest, I don't consider any of the outcomes good for Heflin or the GOP in the county or the state (I don't see it having national importance). That is especially true given the fact that the apparent winner is a Vietnamese gentleman in a district with a growing Asian population. Heflin's challenge could poison the well for the GOP for decades to come (I wrote this last night, before the Chronicle editorial today made the same point). But while I think the best of the three bad options is for him to pack it in, but I don't think that there is anything particularly evil about him making sure that every legitimate vote counts and that illegitimate votes are not counted.

Frankly, I thought Heflin ran a crappy campaign this time around. Dan Patrick has a good analysis of the problems over at Lone Star Times. Dan's observation about the failure of the Heflin campaign to advertise on the local station that had the most listeners with an affinity for conservative causes was a big mistake, because that meant Heflin never activated his base. As such, I have to say he deserved to lose just because his campaign was inept.

|| Greg, 08:11 AM || Permalink || Comments (0) || Comments || TrackBacks (0) ||

Trackback Information for The Heflin-Vo Election Contest

TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference 'The Heflin-Vo Election Contest'.

Comments on The Heflin-Vo Election Contest

Post a comment

Remember personal info?




Winner - 2014 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards
Winner - 2014 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2013 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2012 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2011 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2010 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2009 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Posts by Category

Announcements (posts: 13)
Blogging (posts: 187)
Border Issues & Immigration (posts: 421)
deferred (posts: 4)
Education (posts: 685)
Entertainment & Sports (posts: 483)
Guns & Gun Control (posts: 65)
History (posts: 329)
Humor (posts: 88)
Israel/Middle East (posts: 44)
Medical News (posts: 54)
Military (posts: 273)
News (posts: 1570)
Paid Advertising (posts: 234)
Personal (posts: 108)
Politics (posts: 5261)
Race & Racism (posts: 281)
Religion (posts: 819)
Terrorism (posts: 884)
Texas GOP Platform Reform Project (posts: 4)
The Courts (posts: 310)
Watcher's Council (posts: 482)
World Affairs (posts: 345)


January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
December 0000



Creative Commons License
This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Powered By

Powered by
Movable Type 2.64

Administrative Stuff

Email Me
Syndicate this site (XML)

Advertising Disclosure


About Me

NAME: Greg
AGE: 50-ish
SEX: Male
OCCUPATION: Social Studies Teacher
LOCATION: Seabrook, TX
DISCLAIMER: All posts reflect my views alone, and not the view of my wife, my dogs, my employer, or anyone else. All comments reflect the view of the commenter, and permitting a comment to remain on this site in no way indicates my support for the ideas expressed in the comment.

Search This Site

Support This Site

Recent Entries

Who Is Regan Theiler And Why Was She Allowed To Spend Public Funds On A Sole Source Contract For Her Part-Time Employer?
Not My Idea Of A Stimulating Evening
About Trump's Liberty University Speech
Do Not Place The Secessionist "Texas Independence" Measure On The 2016 Republican Primary Ballot
Conservatives Vs. Liberal On Those Engaged In Violent Political Activity
Tom Mechler Makes His Case Against Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Jared Woodfill Makes His Case For Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Questions About Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Reject The Call To Move 2016 Republican Party Of Texas Convention
It Is Too Bad That Political Parties Cannot Reject Voters Who Seek To Join, Stop Would-Be Candidates Who Want To Run


Watchers Council
  • Ask Marion
  • Bookworm Room
  • The Colossus of Rhodey
  • The Glittering Eye
  • GrEaT sAtAn"S gIrLfRiEnD
  • The Independent Sentinel
  • JoshuaPundit
  • Liberty's Spirit
  • New Zeal
  • Nice Deb
  • The Noisy Room
  • The Razor
  • Rhymes With Right
  • The Right Planet
  • Simply Jews
  • Virginia Right!
  • Watcher Of Weasels

  • Political & Religious Blogs