As of Monday morning everything was set for former President Bill Clinton TMs arrival in the Rio Grande Valley. This time Clinton came to the Valley to encourage voters to hit the polls in support of their democratic candidates.
However, not far into the day, Cameron County Judge Carlos Cascos said he had to question the location where the rally was scheduled to take place after some residents brought-up concerns of an election violation.
"This morning I got a call from a friend of mine who said ~hey I think what they are trying to do across from a voting location is not right, TM Cascos said. He gave me a code section, I looked it up, and I read it and it was right on point."
Cascos said he immediately notified Elections Administrator Roger Ortiz of the possible violation.
Ortiz said Texas law allows rallies near polling locations, as long as they are 100 feet away from the door of the building. However, the loud speakers and political signs that were used for the event, would have been a violation. These campaigning tools, Ortiz said; have to stay at least 1,000 feet from a polling location.
"After visiting with them and talking to them they moved the rally to over 1,000 feet across Central Boulevard, Ortiz said. They're ok as far as I know right now but it would have been a violation of the election Texas code (if they hadn TMt changed the location)."
Cascos, a republican, said he felt it was his duty to speak-up about the issue, but not because it was a democratic rally or because his opponent for Cameron County judge, candidate John Wood, also made an appearance - but because too often leaders opt to look the other way.
"It's just a question of following the law and the law is very clear and I have my share of criticism for it, Cascos said. I didn't make the law, I did not write the law, this is an election code and if there's an issue with it you change it in Austin, you don't change it in Cameron County."
The rally was held at an empty lot across the street from the Brownsville Veteran's Park where it had been originally scheduled.
Ortiz said violations of election codes are class c misdemeanors.
Congressman Solomon Ortiz TMs spokesperson said they did not want to take any chances on violating election laws, and opted to move the rally instead of fighting the issue.