A social worker in Texas was charged with 134 felony counts for allegedly registering people with disabilities to vote despite not being given permission to do so.
Kelly Reagan Brunner is a social worker in the Mexia State Supported Living Center.
According to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, Brunner submitted voter registration applications for 67 residents with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities without their signature or effective consent.
Many of the residents have been declared totally mentally incapacitated by a court, thereby making them ineligible to vote in Texas.
Under Texas law, only a parent, spouse, or child who is a qualified voter of the county may act as an agent in registering a person to vote, after being appointed to do so by that person.
“Registering citizens to vote or to obtain mail ballots without their consent is illegal. It is particularly offensive when individuals purport to be champions for disability rights, when in reality they are abusing our most vulnerable citizens in order to gain access to their ballots and amplify their own political voice,” Paxton said in a statement. “My office is prepared to assist any Texas county in combating this insidious form of fraud.”
The charges came after an investigation by the Limestone County District Attorney’s Office, Sheriff’s Office, and Elections Office, as well as the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General.
It wasn’t clear if Brunner had a lawyer.
Limestone County went for President Donald Trump in this year’s election, according to unofficial results.
Trump received nearly three quarters of the vote, or 6,786 votes, compared to Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s 2,213 votes. Trump won Texas over Biden, according to unofficial results from the state.