More than 50 voters in West Dallas have now contacted the Dallas County Elections Department, saying they received mail-in ballots for the May 6 elections which they did not request.
"There is an issue here, and this is something we need to address," said Dallas County Elections Administrator Toni Pippins-Poole.
"Somebody is completing this application in their behalf, signing as an assistant," Pippins-Poole said.
People who have reported receiving a mail-in ballot say someone then shows up at their house offering to help fill out the ballot.
"The elections department, we don't make house calls," Pippins-Poole said. "We don't come to your home to pick up any ballots. We don't come to your home to even assist you with your ballot."
The Dallas County district attorney recently launched a criminal investigation, and the elections department added staff to answer phones and carefully review mail-in ballots and applications.
"What happens is we have some elections that somebody might win by 20 votes," said Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who was concerned enough to send a letter Thursday to the elections department, asking that the integrity of each mail-in ballot in Dallas be verified.
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After speaking with the elections administrator, Rawlings expressed confidence in the steps being taken.
"I believe our system is a good system," Rawlings said. "Everybody is on this thing, and I think if there are any issues, we can know and right the ship real quick."
On Friday, the Dallas County Elections Department released the advice for voters who receive a mail-in ballot they did not request.
WHAT SHOULD VOTERS DO:
- Voters should contact the Elections Department if they received a mail ballot and did not request one. To report your complaint, call 214-819-6359; email it to email@example.com; or fax it to 214-819-6303.
- If a voter received a mail-in ballot and did not request one, the voter should keep the mail ballot and not dispose of it.
- Voters can cancel their mail-in ballot and vote in person in two ways:
- You can surrender your mail-in ballot at the polls during early voting or on election day, or;
- You can surrender your mail-in ballot to the elections department at 2377 N. Stemmons Freeway, 8th Floor, Dallas, Texas 75207. The elections department will cancel and adjust its files for the voter to vote in person.