Chron smacks Stanart and Sumners


Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart is bad at his job.

Specifically, Stanart has performed poorly as chief election officer in his duty to responsibly and effectively administer elections for Harris County.


Stanart said that the delayed results were due to faulty phone lines that could not be tested until Election Day. This excuse, however, doesn’t explain why results were similarly late in the first round of runoffs back in May, including delayed processing of mail-in ballots. Nor does it explain why he published an inaccurate manual for election judges during the November 2011 election.

Going by this pattern, we’re not looking forward to Stanart’s handling of the presidential election.

But Stanart is not the only elected official in Harris County who has done a poor job running our elections. Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector and Voter Registrar Don Sumners used outdated district boundary information when distributing election ballots for the May primaries. This mistake prevented some valid voters from participating in the Democratic Party primary for Harris County Board of Education, Position 6, while also allowing some people to vote in that race who shouldn’t have. Now Harris County, Sumners and Stanart face a lawsuit from the Harris County Department of Education.

At a time when people around the country support strict voter ID laws against the real or imagined specter of mass voter fraud, or oppose it to prevent threatened disenfranchisement, incompetence in our county government has brought the integrity of our local elections into question.

Stanart and Sumners are of course two of the bigger proponents of the “mass voter fraud” hallucination. The Chron doesn’t often call out officials this starkly, so it was quite bracing to read. Interestingly, they did not bring up the idea of an elections administrator as a potential solution to these problems. I’m still waiting to see if Judge Emmett will try to put it back on the table or not. I suspect we are unlikely to hear about this again until after November. Coby has more.

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5 Responses to Chron smacks Stanart and Sumners

  1. Brad M. says:

    It is just obscene to see such incompetence impairing the integrity of our elections.

  2. Mainstream says:

    In a campaign email blast today, Judicial candidate Elaine Palmer says “It has been alleged that during the primary Stanart would regularly release Absentee and Early Vote results to the Anderson and Guthrie campaigns.”

    Does anyone know of any factual support for such a claim? or who or where this claim is made? Is the claim that lists of who voted were provided? (If so, I thought that was public information, readily available to all.) Or is the charge that the preferences of individual voters or voters collectively were shared early, before the polls closed on election day?

  3. Colleen Vera says:

    I think you should tell the WHOLE story about what REALLY happened to mess up the Harris
    County Dept of Education election boundaries and not just repeat what HCDE says. You state “Knowledge is Good” above. Doesn’t that mean giving all the facts? Readers can find the whole story at:

  4. Ashley says:


    I had not heard about the release of voting results to those campaigns. I wouldn’t know where to find out that information. However, precentage results for specific candidates of early voting and absentee ballots are not known until the day of the election after polls close. The only public information available is the number of votes that were cast during early voting and absentee ballots.

  5. Jj says:

    That link from Colleen is interesting. Mostly what I perceive is that HCDE is a refuge for the absolutely least competent — both Dems and Reps. It is an embarrassment.

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