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Texas AG Ken Paxton: Public Has the Right to View Voted Ballots Cast in Texas Elections

This is big news.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced this week that Texas citizens have the right to view voted ballots cast in Texas elections.

The ruling will allow citizens to fight election fraud in the Lone Star State.

For years AG Paxton has been fighting election fraud in the state.

Paxton’s election fraud unit made arrests related to multiple counts of election fraud in 2021. Paxton announced that over 500 election fraud cases still needed to be heard in court.

And Ken Paxton endorsed a proposed election audit in several Texas counties.

If you don’t have fair elections you don’t have a free society.

The Epoch Times reported:

Ballots cast in Texas elections are considered records that the public has a right to access, according to an opinion released by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

The decision allows the public and members of the Texas Legislature to view and copy ballots cast anonymously without delay. Anonymous ballots are those with no identifiable information about the voter, or ballots with voter-identifying data redacted.

Paxton said in a statement that the opinion, issued on Aug. 17, offers a crucial new tool to fight election fraud, which he has made a cornerstone of his office.

“This opinion will help create new processes that can be used to verify [that] our elections have been conducted fairly and without any fraud,” Paxton wrote. “My office continues to lead from the front in the battle for election integrity, and we won’t back down until our elections are completely and totally secure.”

Paxton’s opinion said anonymous ballots are election records under the Election Code, and the Legislature has established procedures aimed at both preserving those records and granting public access to them.

The opinion replaces Texas Attorney General Opinion 505, established 34 years ago, making cast ballots confidential during a 22-month preservation period after an election.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton released this statement on Tuesday.

Attorney General Paxton released an opinion that outlines the formal process for a legislator or a member of the public to inspect or obtain copies of Texans’ anonymous voted ballots. By doing so, the opinion establishes a crucial new tool in the fight for free and fair elections and should boost confidence in Texas’s elections and promote transparency in government, while upholding voters’ constitutional right to a secret ballot.

As Attorney General Paxton’s recent successful prosecution of vote fraudsters proves, the work to fully secure our elections remains among the most important work of the Attorney General’s Office.

“The people of Texas deserve to have leaders who work tirelessly to promote transparency in government and integrity in our elections, and that’s exactly what I continue to do,” said Attorney General Paxton. “This opinion will help create new processes that can be used to verify our elections have been conducted fairly and without any fraud. My office continues to lead from the front in the battle for election integrity, and we won’t back down until our elections are completely and totally secure.”

Following both the Texas Constitution and the requirements of the Texas Election Code, the opinion outlines the legal framework needed for the Secretary of State and the election records custodian to work together in achieving both ballot preservation and public access to anonymous voted ballots.

“Anonymous voted ballots are election records under the Election Code, and the Legislature has established procedures aimed at both preserving those records and granting public access to them,” the opinion states.

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