Pearland, TX – Early voting for Pearland’s City Council Runoff Election took a turn for the worst yesterday as a smear campaign designed to train poll workers with misinformation turned violent. Poll workers for the campaign of Dalia Kasseb, runoff candidate for Pearland City Council Position 4, were allegedly told some harsh allegations about Mrs. Kasseb’s opponent, Adrian Hernandez, during their training session prior to the start of this runoff election cycle which began yesterday, June 4.
Hernandez, a prominent figure in the Pearland community, came under attack with allegations ranging from voter harassment to racially insensitive remarks. These allegations, according to our sources which wish to remain anonymous out of fear of backlash, caused outrage among Kasseb’s poll workers and eventually manifested into unprovoked and unwarranted verbal and, eventually, physical contact with a Hernandez’s volunteer, (Alvin City Councilman Joel Castro), who continually denied the allegations on the behalf of their chosen candidate.
This assault may be a felony since the volunteer happened to be a Hispanic 19 year old elected official from the City of Alvin. (Texas Penal Code 22.01.B)
Brazoria County Election Officials were contacted with several complaints regarding voter intimidation and felt it necessary to send a county representative to the polls to monitor the situation after police were called to investigate the physical altercation. Statements were taken but no arrests were made as Hernandez’s campaign declined to press charges.
According to a statement on Hernandez’s social media account, a mutual contact of the two campaigns, Mrs. FJ Jones who was recently also on the ballot for Brazoria County Justice of the Peace, Pct 4, Place 2, mediated contact between the two campaigns and issued a statement on behalf of Kasseb. While Mrs. Kasseb acknowledges that this was a smear tactic designed and implemented by her campaign, the statement says that the person responsible has since been dismissed from the Kasseb team. The Kasseb campaign has yet to issue a formal statement of correction or apology.
Early voting for the runoff election will continue through June 12. Election day is June 16. Polling locations, times, and a sample ballot can be found by visiting https://www.pearlandtx.gov/departments/city-hall/election
06/05/2018 – A consultant working directly for Mrs. Kasseb’s campaign, Mr. Burt Levine of Texas Campaigns, spoke to one of our reporters on 06/04/2018 and said that he was also aware of the false allegations made against Mr. Hernandez prior to the start of the election by Mrs. Kasseb’s campaign.
Mrs. Kasseb has now issued an official statement claiming that the information provided by the individuals cited in this article are rumors. She has declined to issue an apology. The video statement can be accessed by visiting https://www.facebook.com/VoteforDalia/videos/653786101628799/.