King Street "Patriots": Voter Intimidation Continues At Polling Stations Around Houston

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Photo by Chasen Marshall
If the signs don't sway you, the poll watchers might.
​Polling stations around Houston have turned into bastions of controversy this week: Fourteen reported incidents Monday and another that Hair Balls heard about on Wednesday in south Houston near Gulfgate.

There are few details for the Gulfgate incident, but what is known, and seems to have become modus operandi, a poll watcher was over-stepping the boundaries between observing and interacting in the democratic process.

In one of the Monday incidents, a female poll watcher at the Kashmere Multi Service Center felt it was necessary and acceptable to stand directly behind voters while they entered their votes, in a manner described as "hovering." When the election judge requested that the overzealous woman back away from the voter, her response was "I have the right to stand wherever I want!"

Almost every year there are a handful of "isolated" reported incidents in and around polling stations, according to Anthony Gutierrez, the Deputy Executive Director of the Texas Democratic Party. But what went on on Monday was something that that he and members of the party viewed as clearly "systematic and organized."

As reports of the incidents were discovered, all fingers appeared to be pointing to the King Street Patriots and their "True the Vote" campaign. A video on the groups' website explains the campaign as an attempt to stop voter fraud (complete with inspirational, Pearl Harbor-type background music). One goatee'd man makes the comment that "the voting system is under attack" and goes on to say "Obama's very connected to ACORN, which is a voter fraud machine; ACORN is the radical army." ACORN is the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

So "True the Vote" is a clear rebuttal to "Rock the Vote," President Obama's campaign to get individuals to come out to vote in the 2008 presidential election. KSP has been reportedly tied to Tea Party activists -- the same Tea Party activists that sent a number of distasteful, grammatically challenged emails to a group called Houston Votes, which was trying to register voters.

The incidents of voter intimidation have been occurring in minority districts and have been directed at Latinos and African-Americans.

The King Street Patriots' attorney, Hiram Sasser, did not return our calls.

On the groups' website, KSP calls the accusations that it has been training its poll watchers to deliberately intimidate or interact with voters "false and libelous", and that any action taken were "purely individual actions" and that "True the Vote conducts extensive citizen training of poll watchers."

Poll watchers are volunteers, appointed by a party or candidate. They're the people who are usually sitting quietly with a clipboard in their hands, watching all the voting excitement. In one television report, a True the Vote poll watcher was identified and the man had no idea of who he represented, nor his purpose as a poll watcher.

As a response, according to Gutierrez, the Texas Democratic Party has seen a rise in volunteers willing to serve as poll watchers, which could help limit and make officials aware of inappropriate conduct.

The incidents were taken so seriously that the U.S. Department of Justice rolled into town to investigate the matter.

As voting came to a close in Kashmere Gardens on Wednesday, and the final voters entered their selections, a row of poll watchers -- including the woman from Monday's incident -- sat patiently, eyes locked.

One volunteer, who did not want to share her name with Hair Balls, said today was a quiet day at the location, the type of day that is preferred at a polling place. Following the incident on Monday, it got a bit "ugly" as one individual came into the room, pointed a finger into the face of the controversial poll watcher and asked "who are you?" The gentleman was removed by security.

On Tuesday, "voters had an attitude" according to the witness, but no further incidents occurred.

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Rlewis3049
Rlewis3049

Why is this allowed to happen.  We are not in a non democratic society where this behavior goes on.  What stance is the Democratic Party is taking, and, how are they dealing with this situation?  If you asked Americans to vote, and they are treated badly at the voting locations, when will you take the necessary actions to put a stop to this and see that those involves are punished.  

Thomas
Thomas

if the 20 million mexicans that are here in texas to buy the election than I am for marching the all the ones who came here without my vote considered to please leave now

William T. Farsaw
William T. Farsaw

Ummm... Andy, I think Kadijah's comment was meant to be a sarcastic reply (the "Are you serious!" comment gives it away, even though the punctuation should have reflected a query) to Francis' obvious copy and paste plagiarism of a Tea-bag email, with it's diatribe blaming the president for the "crippling real estate chaos we are now enduring."

White America is afraid! They are about to become a minority and are afraid, because they have behaved very badly in the past, and now desperately resort to flailing blindly at leadership which more accurately depicts our demographic makeup. Kadijah was commenting on that, so... a few deep breaths... relax. Irony and sarcasm don't always come across in print, and as you mentioned before, when you are participating in a public forum, you must take into consideration a wide variety of opinions. Add to that a wide diversity of humor sensibilities.

You also have to take into account the wider context of any given thread, because there maybe more than one discussion taking place at any given point...

As for the voter intimidation, the status quo in this country has been violent since its very beginning, as with every other nation ruled by men. To be surprised at this is to deny your education. All means available to condense power will continue as long as there is a 'power structure', or any framework that allows greedy mother-fuckers a way to show the world they are entitled to more than the rest.

Andy I.
Andy I.

Khadijah, thanks for expressing your opinion, seeing as how you have the freedom to do so. But I must ask, how does President Obama being black have absolutely anything to do with white Republicans infringing on numerous individuals' voting rights? And don't try using a disclaimer (your "race card" comment) to discount the ignorance of your post. True, people are free here, and true we have it good, but that doesn't make it right to 1) try to limit the freedoms of others or 2) blame race for something that goes beyond ethnicity. That's part of why the country is so fractured (mainly along party lines), because people like you dilute the bigger issues by raising ones that shouldn't be a part of the conversation any longer. A black man is in office, yes -- you should feel fortunate to say you lived in the time that such a thing happened. Now move on.

Khadijah
Khadijah

This just amazes me!This is want happens when a Black man (oooh..the "race card") becomes president. All of a sudden our "liberties" are being taken away. Are you serious! Last time I checked, Americans are about the most free people on earth. Where else in the world can you say what you want, about whoever you want, wherever you want and not be immediately detained, interrogated and abused?I would like to know exactly how Obama, in just two years, totally destroyed America....Oh, I remember he's the "magic negro"....

Andy I.
Andy I.

Megaman, if you want to spout off your opinions in a public forum, you'll have to learn to accept that not everyone is going to agree with you. That's sort of how message boards work. What, didn't have the Internet down in that basement?

Dave Francis
Dave Francis

Can Voter Fraud alter the course of close races?

ACORN, an ominous organization that Obama can be recognized with in his name, is his early working days as a 'community organizer' and legal agent, with this entity showing how easy it was to endorse voter fraud. Acorn was known to register dead people, pets, criminals, and illegal aliens. (ACORN) Association of Community Organization violated federal laws, because there was no real oversight in multiple registrations, erroneous absentee ballots. In the final days before the midterm election a new massive voter fraud has manifested itself now in Houston, Texas. ACORN is out the picture now, believed extinct�but already there are questionable registrations, such as in Orange County, California.

Illegal aliens are registering new voters, but could this turn into fraudulent operation? Obama was originally an ACORN�s attorney, sued Citibank in 1994 ( the Buycks-Roberson Court case), to compel financial institution into giving subprime loans to home buyers with meager credit ratings, setting the stage for the crippling real estate chaos we are now enduring. Both Senator Reid and Democratic politicians allied themselves in using disputed tactics, to make banks perform. Even Gubernatorial Andrew Cuomo ( Branded The Architect of Ruin) was an instigator in trampling on banking regulation to make banks tender mortgages to people who had no business buying a home, with little or no down payment ; nor acceptable credit. ACORN held a threatening attitude using the revised Community Reinvestment Act of 1995, as a fulcrum, forcing subprime mortgages through a very willing Fannie Mae.

This allowed ACORN to pressure mortgagors to grant bad loans to dire risky home buyers in the name of helping the low income people (including Illegal Aliens). In 2007 Before Obama became president ACORNS�s �Project Vote� was accused of voter registration fraud in more than a dozen states. Its parent group in ACORN, along with a staff associates, was scheduled to be tried for fraud in Nevada in a matter of days. Later, ACORN was accused under the RICO Act in the State of Ohio and ordered to never come back to the state. More significantly, the settlement also said ACORN couldn�t merely re-materialize into another association and cause the same type of trouble again in Ohio. Then In Michigan, the Secretary of State told the press that September that ACORN had submitted "a substantial number of duplicate and falsified applications."

Further, in Nevada's Democratic Secretary of State Ross Miller requested a raid on ACORN's offices, following complaints of false names and fictional addresses (plus the starting lineup names of the Dallas Cowboys). Nevada's Clark County Registrar of Voters Larry Lomax said he had seen unbridled fraud in 2,000 to 3,000 applications that ACORN submitted each week. Again-- in Ohio an initial inspection found that about 200,000 newly registered voters reported dubious data, which did not match, car, motor-vehicle or Social Security records. Close to one in every three newly registered Ohio voters ended up on judicial lists being sent to county election boards because they have some inconsistency in their records, an elections spokesman said "

Another irregularity occurred between March 23rd and October 1st, where various groups, including ACORN, submitted over 252,595 registrations to the Philadelphia County Election Board" with 57,435 rejected for faulty information. "Most of these registrations were submitted by ACORN, and discarded due to fake social security numbers, inaccurate dates of birth, clearly fraudulent signatures, addresses that do not exist, and duplicate registrations. In one case, a man was registered to vote more than 15 times before the Primary election." In Lake County, Indiana, ACORN turned in 5,000 new registrations. The authorities there started reviewing them, and quit after they found that the first 2,100 were all fraudulent identified before the November General election. Want to learn more about ACORN AND THE INVOLVEMENT OF PRESIDENT OBAMA? Google�� theObamaFile� website and learn more about the ultimate in voter fraud and the connection with the mortgage meltdown

It is every American citizens duty, whether, Tea Party, Conservatives, Republican or Democrat or even Liberals that should be concerned about this issue. Border States are especially vulnerable to illegal alien involvement, as in reality there is no true protection in the Sanctuary States of California and Nevada, except Arizona where there is a true accounting. The State of Arizona established sensible laws, to stop voter fraud to some extent. Undeniably, there is poor oversight in absentee balloting, as the levelheaded citizen can view for themselves by using keywords in Google or Yahoo any words such as the obvious--Voter Fraud. Believe your own eyes as in the past their have many incidents across the country. When illegal aliens have nothing to lose and being caught could be a slap on the hand as with the new Black Panthers holding clubs outside polling stations in evident intimidation a few months back.

However the DOJ saw fit not to not to prosecute these villains and this harassment didn�t find room in the Liberal leaning media? Absentee ballots, the Motor Voter Act are simple documents to fill-in, within the security of the home and forwarded to the recorder�s office. Using absentee balloting is less recklessly than exposing oneself at polling stations where individuals are open to suspicion. Vigilant citizen watchers should have a right to observe people who are voting. Where Democratic Incumbents are falling from public grace, voter fraud could be an epidemic this election. Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY) could be in a seriously close race and illegal alien voting could change the results for their adversaries Carly Florina, Meg Whitman and in Nevada Sharron Angle.

That�s not saying voter fraud could be just as widespread in every district across our nation. Democrats in previous election have not insisted on any kind of voting safeguards and so this susceptible �Honor �system rolls on. However, Democrat lawyers claim that laws that prohibit voting by illegal aliens, felons, and the dead are prejudiced and unconstitutional, but this hasn't stopped corrupt opponents from vocally manipulating dubious speeches restraining any person from voting. Crowds should be warned it�s illegal for non citizens to vote and a felony under the laws of perjury to submit a ballot. In another example of blatant voter fraud happened in 1996 Democrat Loretta Sanchez defeated long-term Republican incumbent Republican Bob Dornan in a bid for the House seat in California�s 46th congressional district. Dornan�s loss was the result of votes cast by non citizens for Sanchez.

Of course ACORN and its ilk are finished�but are they? Guaranteed--that before this election has ended, there will be serious inquiries into fraudulent registration on behalf of Democratic-Lib extremists. Illegal aliens are here in large numbers, which have been intentionally minimized in numbers by both political parties and the open border brain-dead. The only secure avenue to make it impossible to stop voter fraud, is issuing voter ID photo documents, by the federal government, otherwise the deceased, illegal immigrants, prison inmates and other nefarious registration will remain the vogue.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Ain't no burden like thw white mans burden!

Flash
Flash

"...distasteful, grammatically challenged..."

Kettle, meet Pot. Pot, Kettle.

Megaman
Megaman

Andy I - Hey motherfucker, did I pull your string? No, so shut the fuck up. Facts are this paper has swung so far to the left on every story in the recent years and every story I read now demonizes "the evil white man". I personally take offense to that.

Hullabaloo
Hullabaloo

Exactly. It is against the law to destroy voter registration without turning them in. If they have been filled out, you have to turn them in, no matter how ludicrous the answers are. That's why we have people to check them, because sometimes people have crazy ass names.

Thenonymous
Thenonymous

Jeff, simmer down and learn some facts. Someone who has been hired to sign up voters is LEGALLY BOUND to turn all the applications in, whether or not they are complete, legible or they have Mickey Mouse's name on them. At this point in the process, non-verifiable applications are thrown out.

Actual voter fraud never happens anymore in this country. If you believe it does, you either willfully stupid, or have been lied to.

Andy I.
Andy I.

Facts are fine, when they're not slanted. Jeff, I gather that you read a single article and are shouting out every fact you stumbled upon - am I wrong? Unfortunately, you missed the details. Like how the accusations against Houston Votes were brought on by Harris County Tax Accessor Leo Vasquez, who's currently dealing with a lawsuit having to do with voter registration laws, political favortism, and violations of voter privacy. True, these are currently accusations, but he certainly doesn't have a sterling reputation. Also, so many of the people that Houston Votes registered acknowledged that they were non-citizens when registered, and therefore they did not qualify to vote. HV already fired the canvassers they found to be at fault. And as for your ALL-CAPS indication of 24,000 applicants in a single house, again, you misread (I'm not surprised) - the story had to do with 25,000 registration cards that the accusations of "voter fraud" are stemming from. Again, before you accuse others of having their facts wrong, get your own right.

Early Cuyler
Early Cuyler

Jeff - Don't use facts, they just get in the way. Besides, if anyone disagrees with the libs that comment on the HP, they will just be called scared white people. So what's the point?

Jeff
Jeff

Wow, great reporting. 14 cases. You failed to mention that all 14 cases have been investigated and dismissed. Guess that part wouldn't work for your Tea Party voter intimidation reporting. You also fail to discuss the "Houston Votes" organization and their committment to voter fraud. Six different applications to vote for the SAME voter. Or that they sent in applications for underage voters or NON-CITIZENS to vote as well. Don't mention that do you. Or how about the ONE HOUSE that Houston Votes turned in with 24,000 applicants. Or applications they turned in for voters, yet the address was a vacant lot? Less than 2,000 of the 25,000 applications they turned in were valid, but let's worry about "voter" intimidation of a woman STANDING to close to ONE voter, and not the thousands of illegal voters turned in by a liberal, Democratic group. For shame.

Cheneys Dick
Cheneys Dick

These observers aren't supposed to hover or come up to the booths at all, unless help is asked for. But no matter, scary black people doing scary black things are the real problem. If there was only a way we could have some sort of....solution, something final we could do to stop scary black people from scarring poor, poor, white people. Hmmm........

NRR
NRR

AMEN to that Early Cuyler! Couldn't have said it better. I think a large man with a club would be alot more "intimidating" than a lady who "stared" at me!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Early supports voter intimidation? How am I not surprised. I know why conservatives don't want minorities to vote, but poor, poor Early might claim race card. Sad, pathetic tool. You never worked an election, so you have never had p?eople come up to you saying they were denied the vote. But no, you conservatives are the real victims. Typical conservative bullshit.

Wyatt
Wyatt

Back with a vengeance.

Early Cuyler
Early Cuyler

Fourteen reported incidents Monday and another that Hair Balls heard about on Wednesday in south Houston near Gulfgate.

Well hell, if Hair Balls "heard" about it, then it must have happened right? Yeah, let's just own the Black Panther incident up to "two random idiots" as Wyatt put it. But clearly, a woman "hovering" around is evidence of "systematic and organized" action. Not to mention there was an incident of finger-pointing and demands to identify one's self! Good lord, those poor, intimidated voters! The outrage, the humanity! Much worse than two militant thugs brandishing weapons outside a polling station hurling racial slurs. Looking at the comments here, I am beginning to understand how a woman who has difficulty forming a complete sentence keeps getting reelected to serve as a member of Congress. Bless your delusional hearts liberals.

Andy I.
Andy I.

Megaman, thank you for stepping away from the video games and out of your mothers basement to share you narrow-minded opinion. How do you gather that the HP hate's white people? Because it supports equal rights for people of every ethnicity? I mean, I don't know the last time you surfaced, but everyone is welcome to equal rights and a right to vote these days. As for "fair and balanced," I believe there was a no comment from the KSP, most likely because their racist thinking and bigotry doesn't come across well in sound bites.

Megaman
Megaman

Another 1 sided biased article written by the Houston Press. Why do you hate white people? Its easy to see why the size of your paper has shrunk in size over the past 10 years. Must be really tough to find advertisers that support your agenda huh?

Fox News may not be totally "fair and balanced", but you DAMN sure aint. Stick to doing restaurant and bar reviews. That's all you're really good for.

Matt Bramanti
Matt Bramanti

It's really interesting that despite this supposed intimidation all over town, nobody has any verifiable evidence. No photos, no video, no audio, nada.

Hell, we don't even have names. Just impossible-to-verify four-word quotes from unnamed sources.

Anonymous
Anonymous

There is and always has been extensive voter fraud in Houston's negro and Hispanic percents. LULAC and NAACP oppose any sort of voter ID check in order to make voting fraud easier.

Andy I.
Andy I.

Yo BigDaddy, I fail to see where liberty fits into intimidation and forcing ones agenda? In fact, pretty sure that's just about the polar opposite of liberty. I'm not surprised, Conservatives confuse quite a lot of things. You're forgiven.

BigDaddyLiberty
BigDaddyLiberty

So, the liberals don't like to eat the pie that they serve. Liberty is getting organized and motivated!

Luis Guerrero
Luis Guerrero

Now is the time to fight racial inequality. We must let Tea Cuppers know that PEOPLE OF COLOR WILL NOT STAND FOR HARASSMENT OR ANY THING ELSE.

It's the Chewbacca Defense! Bl
It's the Chewbacca Defense! Bl

Don't change the subject. Don't allow the subject to be changed. We're not talking about a couple of jerks in the Black Panthers in Philadelphia from 2 years ago.

We are talking about allegations of organized voter intimidation in the present day in Houston, Texas.

Wyatt
Wyatt

From wiki:

"Minister King Shabazz carried a billy club, and is reported to have pointed it at voters while both men shouted racial slurs,[5] including phrases such as "white devil" and "you're about to be ruled by the black man, cracker."

Sounds like two random idiots. Shitty and all, but you're comparing that to actual organized voter intimidation?

ALIAS
ALIAS

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B...

Wikipedia addresses the New Black Panther Party intimidation. If you missed it, Obama dismissed their charges, and in protest the man who would have enforced the charges quit his high ranking position w/ the Obama administration, take that as you will. All interests groups seem to participate in the voter intimidation, it is definitely not just the right wing who participates in voter intimidation and fraud. Plenty of dead people vote for both sides. It's kinda like MLB players taking performance enhancers, if one does it, the rest feel they must in order to succeed... pretty ugly cycle.

Only the Radical Right Cares,
Only the Radical Right Cares,

On the Black Panther "voter intimidation" case - I'd defer to a member of the Civil Rights Commission who is investigating this ginned-up "controversy".

A conservative member of the Civil Rights Commission, Abigail Thernstrom, has also defended the Justice Department's handling of the case.

"This doesn't have to do with the Black Panthers; this has to do with [conservative] fantasies about how they could use this issue to topple the administration," Ms. Thernstrom told Politico last month.

The case could damage the Obama administration, says Mr. Lichtman at American University. But he also argues that most Americans understand that the Voting Rights Act was intended to correct gross and historic injustices, not nit-pick along partisan lines.

"You can try to force [the Voting Rights Act] to be equal, but it's not," he says. "If these are the worst examples you can find, then, by God, white people in America are pretty safe."

Wyatt
Wyatt

"Anybody want to comment on the Black Panther voter intimidation case at a polling place?"

Link?

Anonymous
Anonymous

Anybody want to comment on the Black Panther voter intimidation case at a polling place? There was physical intimidation in that case - not simply perceived intimidation.

Harry Angel
Harry Angel

The same thing happened in 2008. I was working at a location when I heard from people coming out that a woman had the gall to actually walk up to people and change their vote. Minority precincts are always targeted by these people. They illegally turn people away. If you are denied your vote, get a mail in ballot. These are not isolated incidents. They happen every election by the same organizations who want as few democrats to vote as possible. There has never been an incident like these in River Oaks, Piney Point, or other wealthy, affluent areas of town.

Anonymous
Anonymous

If anyone tries to interfere with the voting process at your polling location, tell the election judge immediately.

Then report it to one or more of these numbers.

Texas Secretary of State: (800) 252-8683 U.S. Department of Justice: (800) 253-3931 ACLU Voting Rights Project: (877) 523-2792 ACLU of Texas: T/512.478.7300; F/512.478.7303

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