Election machine malfunction lawsuit heads to grand jury

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Hidalgo County tax payers won't be paying for any forensic analyst to evaluate the functionality of the county's election machines.

On Tuesday, county commissioners voted against beginning the bidding process for a forensic analyst.

Now Hidalgo District Attorney Rene Guerra says instead he will allow a grand jury to decide if the DA's office should hire an analyst to examine the election machines in question.

"If they say to go ahead then we will look at some experts that have already surfaced that may help us in looking at the programming, Guerra said.

If someone is hired Guerra assures the public they won't be paid through tax dollars.

"It will be through a public fund but not tax payer money, Guerra said.

But some candidates who won in the disputed March primary election tell Action 4 the evidence of tampering must be presented by those filing the claims.

"They are the ones that need to provide the evidence. They need to bring the proof and the burden is on them, 92nd District Judge Democratic candidate Luis Singleterry said. They need to foot the bill they need to fund their personal lawsuits."

The DA argues the issue must be addressed to protect the integrity of the election process.

We have to address it whether we want to or not. There is too much commotion in reference to the machines and the voting process," Guerra said. "We give the machines full faith and credit like we do the American currency."

If the evidence suggests they need a look county elections administrator Yvonne Ramon says she will welcome an investigation.

If in fact there were evidence that needed to be looked into I welcome it, Ramon said. "I am confident the judicial system will work here and am the first to honor any steps that our judicial system and das office would render."

The lawsuit will be looked at by a grand jury on Thursday.

While Rene Guerra lost in his re-election bid, he is not part of the lawsuit.

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