ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A candidate who narrowly lost to incumbent Penny Hubbard in the Democratic primary for the 78th district state house seat has filed suit alleging voter fraud.
Bruce Franks Jr. lost by 90 votes to Hubbard, and says the high number of absentee votes Hubbard received puts the election in doubt.
“Someone is misusing the absentee ballot system,” said Frank’s attorney Dave Roland. “We don’t know who that person is. We know that the abuses that happened tend to favor the Hubbards.”
The suit stops short of blaming the Hubbards for the alleged irregularities.
“I would not feel comfortable saying ‘the Hubbards are behind this, the Hubbards are dirving this,'” Roland said. “We just don’t have that evidence yet. So, I’m not comfortable making that assertion.”
Roland claims, on election day some 53 percent of voters in the district who cast their ballots at the polls voted for Franks, while 78 percent of absentee votes favored Penny Hubbard.
The suit alleges some election board workers had concerns about the absentee voting system, but their concerns were not heeded.
“The people working in the absentee ballot section we believe observed violations of the law going on, and we hope to have them testify about that,” Roland said.
Franks hopes to move the case through fast enough to win a court order for a special election — in time for him to win the primary and get on the November ballot.
The St. Louis Election Board released a statement on the case:
“The St. Louis Board of Election Commissioners takes all complaints seriously. The St. Louis Board and the Secretary of State are investigating certain complaints regarding the recent election.
“The written complaint received this morning contained the serious allegation that evidence exists of illegal activity regarding the absentee ballot process. Therefore, we are referring this complaint to the Circuit Attorney and the United States Attorney.”
KMOX is awaiting a call back from Rep. Hubbard.
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