Superior Court Judge William Clark tossed out the results of a Democratic mayoral primary election in Bridgeport, Connecticut on Wednesday, citing video evidence of possible ballot stuffing that he described as “shocking,”
The move – just six days before the general election – has sent shockwaves throughout the Constitution State’s largest city.
Mayoral candidate John Gomes filed a court challenge of the primary won in September by Democratic Mayor Joe Ganim, who earned just 251 more votes than his opponent. A total of 8,173 votes had been cast.
Judge Clark cited surveillance footage that appears to show evidence of multiple people shoving bags of ballots into drop boxes in violation of state law.
Multiple videos, one of which can be seen below, were posted to Gomes’ Facebook page.
This is the OUTRAGEOUS video of the Democrat Clerk stuffing illegal ballots into the City drop box and visiting it multiple times in one day
— George (@BehizyTweets) November 1, 2023
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Videos Of Possible Ballot Stuffing Prompt Judge To Toss Election Results
The above surveillance video reportedly shows Wanda Geter-Pataky, vice chair of the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee and a Ganim supporter, pushing ballots into a city drop box.
Geter-Pataky, according to NBC Connecticut, exercised her right to remain silent multiple times in court and refused to state whether or not she was, in fact, the person in the video.
Another video appears to show multiple individuals, including one wearing a t-shirt in support of Gomes, loading up ballots into another drop box.
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It should be noted that under Connecticut law, it is legal for voters to designate caregivers, elected officials, law enforcement, or family members to drop off ballots in their name.
Additionally, both candidates and their teams have offered opposing conjecture as to what is actually being seen in the videos.
However, the video evidence is so muddled that Judge Clark felt he had no choice but to throw out the results.
“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,” he said in his ruling.
“The videos are shocking to the court and should be shocking to all the parties,” the judge continued.
After that video was released, John Gomes, the cheated candidate in the race, held a press conference exposing the mountain load of evidence they had that the election was stolen from him. His team also promised to challenge the results in courthttps://t.co/qDkxw5oJPU pic.twitter.com/oS8S0uezP3
— George (@BehizyTweets) November 1, 2023
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Primary Will Be Held After The General Election
Aside from the video evidence purportedly showing ballot stuffing in action, Judge Clark, according to the Associated Press, also “cited statistics showing that abnormally large numbers of absentee ballots were cast in certain voting districts,” further casting doubt on the legitimacy of the Democratic primary.
“This is a victory for the people of Bridgeport,” Gomes responded to the judge’s ruling. “Our campaign always believed that the integrity of our democratic process must be upheld and Superior Court Judge William Clark agreed.”
The situation, though, has created quite a conundrum for the city of Bridgeport. The general election will be held as planned on November 7th. At the same time, however, voters would have to return at a later date to decide who the Democrat candidate will be.
A primary held after the general election is unique, for sure. But Clark stated his hands are tied, as he does not have the authority to reschedule or postpone a general election.
🚨 Judge Overturns Bridgeport Democrat Mayoral Primary Election, Calling Evidence of Fraud ‘Shocking’
“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… pic.twitter.com/P3vXAH4LXH
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) November 2, 2023
Mayor Ganim is a former felon, having been convicted in 2003 on sixteen federal counts for such crimes as racketeering, extortion, racketeering conspiracy, bribery, and mail fraud, among others.
He was sentenced to nine years in prison and ordered to pay roughly $300,000 in fines and restitution. Ganim resigned two weeks after his conviction, but mounted a comeback that brought him back to the Mayor’s office in 2015.
Elon Musk wrote on X that the election interference is “beyond reasonable doubt.”
“The only question is how common it is.”
Judge orders a new election in Connecticut town after surveillance video showed ballot stuffing in drop boxes!
That this happened here is beyond reasonable doubt. The only question is how common it is. https://t.co/ux368NmufK
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 2, 2023
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