Rockwall Herald-Banner (Texas)

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January 29, 2014

Texas Democrats call for investigation into Rockwall County Clerk's office

The Texas Democratic Party (TDP) has called for a criminal investigation into alleged illegal election activity at the Rockwall County Clerk’s office, according to a statement released by the organization Wednesday.

In addition, a letter requesting a “cease and desist from unlawful political fundraising activities” was also issued by Chad Dunn, general counsel for the TDP.

A statement from the TDP on Wednesday claims the Facebook page of Rockwall County Clerk Shelli Miller advertised the sale of tickets for  Saturday’s Rockwall County GOP Reagan Day 2014 event and that these tickets could be purchased in Miller’s office at the Rockwall County Courthouse.

Attorney General Greg Abbott is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at the event, and due to the involvement of the Abbot campaign in the Reagan Day event, the TDP has asked for an investigation into the alleged illegal activities to be opened.

“It is inexcusable to use taxpayer funded facilities for political fundraising,” TDP Executive Director Will Hailer said in the statement. “The Rockwall County GOP must immediately cease their unlawful activities. This is political corruption, plain and simple.

“A thorough investigation is warranted in this case and it is incumbent on the Attorney General’s office to put election year politics aside and move forward by appointing a special investigator.”

The cease and desist letter from Dunn claims that Stephen Jacobs, a Rockwall County resident, went to the County Clerk’s office and purchased a ticket to attend the Reagan Day event. Texas Election Code prohibits the making of a campaign contribution in certain public buildings like the county courthouse. It is also a criminal offense to use public funds to assist with a candidate’s political advertising. Abbott is a Gubernatorial candidate.

Dunn’s letter goes on to say the following:

“We are requesting that you immediately cease and desist from the unlawful activities described. Furthermore, by copy to the Office of the Attorney General, we are requesting that a criminal investigation be conducted at once concerning these events. Given that these activities implicate the campaign of Attorney General Greg Abbott, we request that a special investigator be appointed who has independence from the Attorney General.”

Miller is currently running in the upcoming March primary election, seeking another term as County Clerk. She was unavailable for comment.

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