Abbott calls out 'voter fraud' in Houston judicial race

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) pointed to what he viewed as a prime example of voter fraud on Saturday in a Houston-area judicial race after a new election was ordered nearly two years after the fact. A Houston judge found last month that more than 1,400 votes in the 2022 180th District Court race were...

Abbott calls out 'voter fraud' in Houston judicial race

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) pointed to what he viewed as a prime example of voter fraud on Saturday in a Houston-area judicial race after a new election was ordered nearly two years after the fact.

A Houston judge found last month that more than 1,400 votes in the 2022 180th District Court race were invalid and threw out the results because only 450 votes separated the Democratic and Republican candidates.

“Voter fraud is real. Especially in Houston,” Abbott wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “The Judge hearing the case ordered a redo of the election. We must end voter fraud.”

There will be a new election for the judicial seat, though an appeal to the ruling is expected. 

Judge David Peeples said an investigation found that 983 votes cast in the 2022 race were determined to be invalid because voters lived outside Harris County or had other residency-related issues. Additionally, 445 voters did not show a valid form of photo identification and 48 mail ballots lacked required signatures or were not received before the deadline.

Judge DaSean Jones, the Democratic candidate, defeated Republican Tami Pierce in 2022 and has held the judicial seat since. Jones was first elected in 2018 and is currently running for a seat on the Texas Supreme Court.

Peeples’ decision last month was part of a set of 2022 election challenge resolutions. None of the other 20 cases resulted in any change in electoral outcome or new vote. The judge said in the 180th District race that a new vote was needed because it was unclear for whom the invalid votes were cast.

A date for the new election has not been set.