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Mary Moore, who trailed frontrunner Rochelle Camacho in the Democratic Party primary run-off election for the nomination to the ballot for Frio County Judge, has filed a petition contesting the election.
Moore alleges that illegal voting practices took place in the hotly contested run-off in May.
Neither Moore or Camacho had garnered more than 50 percent of the vote in the March primary elections to secure the Democratic Party nomination, prompting a run-off between the two leading candidates.
Bradford E. Bullock, attorney for Moore, laid out four allegations in a petition to contest the election filed at the district clerk’s office on Thursday, June 16.
The first claims a discrepancy in official results. Moore claims in her petition that results first showed her receiving 98 votes to Camacho’s 121, but the summary results from the county elections office show Moore with 986 votes and Camacho with 1,084.
The petition claims that Camacho and people assisting the candidate unlawfully assisted voters within 100 feet of the polling location, a violation of Texas Election Code Section 61.01. The petition also alleges that those assisting Camacho were not administered the oath of assistance or had filled out the proper forms to help others cast ballots.
According to Carlos Segura, county elections administrator, an oath of assistance should be recited each time an individual helps another individual cast a ballot.
“In my opinion it was a simple oversight,” Segura said Tuesday morning. “I do not believe there was intent to defraud.”
Moore claims to have witnessed Camacho assisting voters within 100 feet of a polling location during early voting and on election day. However, the candidate’s name is not on the three pages of oaths of assistance filed at the county election administrator’s office.
According to records filed at Segura’s office, there are seven pages of oath assistance forms. Camacho’s name does not appear on the forms. Moore’s name appears on the forms twice.
“Anyone can help,” Segura said. “It just was not logged properly.”
Forms filled out by three women assisting Camacho were insufficient in both information provided and the number of forms filled out, the petition alleges.
“The Frio County election administrator apologized for the discrepancies and said election workers may not have filled out the forms correctly,” the petition states.
Segura said in an interview Tuesday that he takes full responsibility for the forms being completed incorrectly.
Moore’s petition asks the 81st & 218th district court to conduct a tribunal hearing to determine the true outcome of the election. If the true outcome cannot be ascertained, she claims, the election should be declared void.
Camacho filed an answer seven days later, denying all claims and demands in Moore’s petition.
Camacho is asking the court to dismiss the petition with prejudice and grant her any relief to which she may be entitled.
“The integrity of our election has been allegedly compromised and I am fighting to restore it,” Moore said on Tuesday.
Camacho has deferred all inquiries to her legal representative, who had not returned calls as of presstime Tuesday.