The Buzz raises questions

Over at the Laredo Buzz, there’s an interesting story about the Municipal Court election. I provided a clip but it makes you go “hmmm…”

The biggest question that morning was the disparity in numbers reported for the second and third place finishers which at that moment were Caballero in second and Lopez Escoto in third with both candidates receiving over 10,000+ votes. Later that morning about two hours after the media had reported the final numbers on television news the results changed on paperwork given to the public by the Webb County Elections Office and the two candidates in second and third place originally now ended up with only 7,000+ votes a piece leaving the then third place candidate Madeline Escoto Lopez in second and in the run-offs and Caballero in third. Now the Caballero Camp has reported that campaign signs that were placed on busy intersections across Laredo during the campaign were removed without consent of either the owners of the property or by staffers of the campaign.

This has always been a mystery to me – how is it possible for numbers to change or more votes found or votes disappear? I also ran across an issue in the Brownsville Herald where an election bag of uncounted votes shows up from Robstown. It only had 7 votes but… why did no one notice it missing before? Did no one say, for example, bag 4 of 10 is not in the pile?

Which makes me wonder. In this community where elections always seem to have a question or two, why have I not heard of poll watchers? If they exist, I am not aware of them. I have always wanted to volunteer as a poll watcher for the Carter Center but if I cannot travel to other countries to ensure their elections are fair, maybe I could join a group of volunteers that are watching what happens during the voting and election process. Yes! magazine has a Guide to Establishing a Poll Watching Group. Comments? Suggestions?

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About Que Fregados

Que Fregados is a quirky look at little things that strike us funny in Laredo and the unique Latino culture. Suggestions and comments are welcome. You can also email to quefregados@gmail.com.
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6 Responses to The Buzz raises questions

  1. kbinldo says:

    There was some initial confusion because everyone thought the numbers printed in the paper were the final results, but in reality, those results weren’t released until 6:30 a.m. (approximately). Not sure how to explain the loss of 3K votes a piece though. As for poll watching, the current “poll watchers” are only there to spy on voters’ ballots & play mind games with the Election Code (Valdez wanting to ban Tano from the hospital when his uncle was recovering from heart surgery springs to mind). Perhaps a spotlight should be turned on the Elections Office & the voter rolls?

  2. Chuck Owen says:

    QF, I am on the opposite end of being confused. From the start, early on, the city election report showed Madeline as #2. I could not figure why KGNS was reporting it differently. So, there is confusion in the media that we like to trust, methinks. If there was an error, it was on the part of people who should have known better and reported it so.

  3. Poncho1950 says:

    My question: Where did the media get the final numbers that they reported? Did they have a breakdown by precinct, or was it complete? Was it provided on paper or e-mailed electronically? I would start with the media and go backwards from there to the initial report they received, if it is different from the first, and then try to see where the numbers changed in the final outcome. It’s always in the details.

  4. Poll Watching says:

    I’m in for poll watching. I’ve done it in other places years back. Lets do it.

    • Que Fregados says:

      I am curious about exploring the possibility for this area. Even if there is no wrong-doing in this particular election, I think people would feel more at ease if there were 3rd party observers and it would save some $$ by not preventing some recounts and requests to throw out elections. I have your email address so will let you know.

  5. beto says:

    hi I was fortunate to find this in wordpress
    wonder what is happening? did anyone look into it?
    I learn a lot in your topic, really, thank your very much

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