The Texas Senate race was just disrupted by reports of disturbing voting machine behavior

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Republican Senator Ted Cruz is so desperate to win his Texas reelection bid against Democratic Congressman Beto O’Rourke that he has humiliatingly sacrificed the last shreds of his dignity at the altar of Trump, welcoming the president with open arms to his rally even after Trump insulted his wife and implied his father helped kill JFK.

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The polls are neck-and-neck and there’s seems to be a good chance that a Texas Senate seat flips blue this November. But, that’s assuming the election goes smoothly and democratically, and there are already signs that there could be serious problems.

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ABC News reports that early voters are experiencing strange problems at their polling places. One Texas woman said that she tried to cast her ballot as a straight Democratic ticket, but when she went to review and finalize her choices, she saw that somehow the machine had changed her vote from Beto O’Rourke to Ted Cruz.

When she retraced her steps and recast her vote the same erroneous change happened again. Then it happened a third. The same thing happened to a voter at another polling place.

Republicans are also experiencing some errors, albeit less serious ones. Some voters trying to vote straight ticket GOP saw that their vote for Ted Cruz was removed, so that their vote was cast for neither Senate candidate.

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Officials told ABC that the problem is rare and insisted that it is not happening to a large section of voters. Apparently, it’s happened in past years as well. The Texas Secretary of State addressed the issue this past Monday, calling it “operator error.”

“It’s not a glitch, it’s a user-induced problem that comes from the type of system that we have. I think both sides could be equally hurt,” said the Ft. Bend County Election Administrator John Oldham.

Oldham claims that the error could be caused by voters who attempt to “twist the selection dial and push the enter button” at the same time. In their rush to get done the process, he claims, they’re confusing the machine.

AJ+ reports that the voting machines experiencing the problems are used in 30% of the state’s counties.

A full investigation must be opened to ensure the integrity of the election. There is no excuse for machines that throw out or change votes, as it invalidates the entire basis of our democracy. Voters must be given a fair opportunity to finally rid themselves of Ted Cruz and his corporatist cronyism.

Natalie Dickinson

Natalie is a staff writer for the Washington Press. She graduated from Oberlin College in 2010 and has been freelance blogging and writing for progressive outlets ever since.

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