Democrats’ September primary in Bridgeport, Connecticut, pitted incumbent Mayor Joe Ganim against challenger John Gomes, the city’s former chief administrative officer. Gomes at first appeared to have won, but after absentee ballots were counted, Ganim won by 251 votes out of 8,173 cast, The Associated Press reported.
A surveillance camera showed individuals stuffing multiple absentee ballots into a ballot dropbox at night. Lawyers for the city of Bridgeport argued that it didn’t prove illegal voting took place.
However, Connecticut Superior Court Judge William Clark disagreed.
“The videos are shocking to the court and should be shocking to all the parties,” Clark wrote in his ruling Wednesday.
The judge added that “to disregard the significant mishandling of ballots by partisans that were caught on video flouting the provisions of Connecticut law” would “endorse this blatant practice of ballot harvesting.”
As explained in my book “The Myth of Voter Suppression: The Left’s Assault on Clean Elections,” ballot harvesting and mail-in voting have been the chief avenues of adjudicated cases of voter fraud. The book details how a congressional election in North Carolina and a mayor’s race in Miami, as well as local races in Illinois, California, and Texas, were overturned after ballot harvesting scandals were revealed.
The Associated Press reported that Bridgeport voters still will vote in the general election Nov. 7, but will have to return at a later date for a new primary election to pick the rightful Democrat nominee for mayor.
The judge said he lacked the authority to postpone or cancel the general election.
In this heavily Democrat city, the party’s primary likely would determine the winner of the mayor’s race. A Republican candidate for mayor, David Herz, and an independent, Lamond Daniels, are also on the Tuesday ballot.
“The volume of ballots so mishandled is such that it calls the result of the primary election into serious doubt and leaves the court unable to determine the legitimate result of the primary,” Clark wrote in his ruling.
Ganim, the incumbent mayor, rallied supporters to turn out on Election Day to “send a powerful message that we want to keep the progress going in Bridgeport.”
Gomes called the judge’s ruling “a victory for the people of Bridgeport,” and said, “Our campaign always believed that the integrity of our democratic process must be upheld and Superior Court Judge William Clark agreed.”
The court case shows the need for more election reforms, said Connecticut state Senate Minority Leader Kevin Kelly, a Republican.
“Judge Clark saw what the rest of us saw on the videos: absentee ballot box stuffing in Bridgeport where 1,255 ballots were deposited by only 420 individuals,” Kelly said in a public statement. “In video after video, we saw dubious and repeated absentee ballot box dumping involving multiple people.”
One of those identified as stuffing ballots into the dropbox reportedly is a Ganim supporter and former vice chairwoman of the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee. She asserted her Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate herself in court.