Liberty County Elections Office responds to DA’s race being left off ballot

A letter to the community:

Your Office of Liberty County Elections strives for transparency and fairness. In keeping with those goals, we would like to explain the circumstances leading to the omission of Ms. Bergman’s name on the 2020 General Election Ballot.

Across the state, weekly lawsuits and federal court rulings between state government, the Republican Party of Texas, the Democrat Party of Texas and the Green Party have resulted in elections offices having to throw out ballots, print new ones, and repeat the process in accordance with the latest court rulings. This has been an incredibly challenging time.

State law allows the county elections administrator – our office – to certify candidates as elected who have no opposition from another party on the General Election Ballot. These are candidates for county offices who won their respective primaries. Certifying such candidates as elected save space on ballots, and makes voting simpler for the voter. Our office certified many such candidates after the primary election.

The Office of District Attorney only serves Liberty County, not multiple counties. Thus, our office believed we had the authority to certify Ms. Bergman as “elected.” We were wrong. Even though she had no opposition and that office only serves Liberty County, that particular position is not considered a county office.

When it was brought to our attention, we offered repeated, sincere apologies to Ms. Bergman and worked immediately with the Secretary of State’s Office to remedy the issue. While the county could not certify her as elected, the state could. Such certification was achieved.

The omission of Ms. Bergman’s name on the ballot does not in any way prevent her from assuming office. She is the elected District Attorney for Liberty County, and will assume office Jan. 1, 2021. We look forward to an exhibition of grace and understanding for all involved in this unfortunate matter.

Serving you, Klint Bush

Administrator, Liberty County Elections

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.

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