While Xavier Campos seemed to recover from his scandal-induced loss of the ability to speak this week, all but announcing victory in his tight race Magdalena Carrasco on Tuesday, the Carrasco camp is claiming voter fraud in the Eastside San Jose City Council race. Kevin de León, the LA state assembly member (and Carrasco’s ex), says he’s been hearing from eyewitnesses who claim to have spotted some shenanigans by members of the South Bay Labor Council (SBLC) in District 5.
Some say they saw Campos supporters loading boxes of uncounted ballots into their cars at East Side polling spots on election day. Others say that the SBLC sponsored a job and Halloween fair at the Mi Pueblo Shopping Center in the week before the election, advertising to Spanish-speakers to bring their ballots so that they could “help fill them out.”
The most frequent compliant, however, comes from Eastsiders who report seeing people representing themselves as Carrasco supporters going house-to-house collecting absentee ballots. In fact, de León says that Secretary of State Debra Bowen’s office is investigating a claim from one East San Jose woman who signed testimony stating that a man identifying himself as a Carrasco worker came to her door and claimed that he was there on Magdalena’s behalf to collect her family’s ballots.
Further, some of Carrasco’s number crunchers say there was a disproportionate rush of new voters signing up in District 5 during the election’s last registration period. They tell Fly that 716 new voters were registered in 654 District 5 households within one month. Considering that the East Side race came down to less than 20 votes in the primary, and that Campos is taking his sister’s seat now with a mere 305-vote lead, Carrasco’s supporters don’t think those numbers add up.
Assemblyman de León, a pro-labor legislator at the state capital, is telling everyone he knows about a chat he had with former San Francisco City District Attorney (and the apparent newly elected California Attorney General) Kamala Harris last Saturday. Harris’s brother-in-law is Tony West, who famously fell victim to a racially tinged mailer when he was running against the SBLC-backed Manny Diaz (Nora Campos’ former boss) in the 2000 assembly race. “Kamala was telling me that that was like the dirtiest race of all time, but I told her, ‘Oh, I can one-up you with this one.’”