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Texas GOP Chair Cites 'Proof' of Election Fraud

By J. Lyn Carl,

Austin, TX –

Promising that evidence of fraud will be produced at the Jan. 27 "mini-trial" on the election contest of the House District 149 race for state representative, Republican Party of Texas Chair Tina Benkiser is encouraging fellow Republicans to contact their state representatives regarding the contest to "tell them that you don't want this swept under the rug."

In a statement on the state GOP web site, Benkiser says that in the election contest brought by former State Rep. Talmadge Heflin (R-Houston), there is "definite proof" that votes cast for Democratic newcomer Hubert Vo of Houston were cast by "voters long dead, votes being cast from out of district, individuals voting up to 80 times, and cash payments being given in exchange for votes."

She claims seats were "stolen" from Heflin in the race and that there is "definite proof" of voter fraud.

Vo won the election by 32 votes.

Benkiser says some lawmakers in her own party are urging that the election contest be "swept under the rug" because they fear media reaction if the election result should be reversed.

She encourages fellow Republicans to contact their state representatives to tell them they want "evidence that is presented before the small committee to come before the full House so that the entire body can vote on it."

The "mini-trial" is set for Jan. 27 in Room 140 of the Reagan Building. Rep. Will Hartnett (R-Dallas) is serving as Master of Discovery in the proceedings, while a select committee appointed by House Speaker Tom Craddick will hear the evidence.

The House will have three options if the issue comes before the body - to seat Heflin, to seat Vo or to order a new election.