After a great Blue Wave November 2022 Election, where Hays County Democrats won every race where they fielded a candidate, two Republicans filed for a recount.
However, Mark Jones, Candidate for Hays County Judge and David Puryear, Candidate for Criminal District Attorney, ultimately lost their recount efforts.
David Puryear is linked to a suspect in the January 6th insurrection that attempted to keep duly elected Joe Biden from being certified as the winner of the Presidential election.
During the election season, Puryear held a fundraiser at One Shot Distillery & Brewery in Dripping Springs, owned by election denier Phil Waldron. According to news reports, on January 5th, Waldron spoke to congress members in Washington, asking them to “declare national security emergency” and “declare electronic voting in all states invalid.”
The County Judge recount took place on Monday, November 28, 2022. According to posts on social media, recount participants, working in teams of three, started by manually counting paper ballots from Wimberly and Dripping Springs. Then they switched to counting mail-in ballots.
Counters were going to recount provisional ballots on Tuesday morning, but then Jones called off the recount.
A “watcher” stated on social media that some Republicans who had not signed up to watch or count in the County Judge Recount, showed up and were asked to leave. After refusing, they were escorted out by police.
The District Attorney recount took place on December 1, 2022.
In a statement he issued on Facebook, Republican candidate Mark Jones said, “After reviewing mail in and provisional ballots, we found the votes we needed were simply not there, so we called off the recount. Thank you all for your support.”
Judge Ruben Becerra issued the following statement on Facebook.
“As many know, my opponent Mark Jones requested a manual recount for our election. Yesterday after 11 hours of sorting, counting, discussing, and more counting, there was almost no change to the original results. This morning, Mr. Jones met with his team, felt satisfied with the results, and called the recount over. Thank you to my team, Mark Jones and his team, and all the recount workers for their hard work during the entire process.
A few thoughts after being part of a recount for over 80k votes, in a small room full of half democrats and half republicans- WE ARE ALL GOOD PEOPLE!
We were part of a team with a common goal, and we worked together to count votes. Everyone watched out for each other, shared results with both sides, and came to a consensus on the counts. It was heartwarming to see us all looking out for each other. We are stronger together!
I want to say THANK YOU to all that helped in this process, counters, and watchers. They were professional, stayed focused, and worked hard to make sure everything ran smoothly. Another big thank you to Jennifer Doinoff, and her team at the elections office. A recount of this size is no small task, and they handled every moment with integrity, and swift action. HUGE THANK YOU to Cate Sitton, who came in on Monday morning to be a counter and was chosen to be the Chair of the Recount. It was a huge task, and she was the perfect person for the job.”
In the November 2022 election, Incumbent Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra prevailed over challenger Jones by a margin of 926 votes, 44,517 (50.53%) to 43,591 (49.47%).
Kelly Higgin, District Attorney candidate, defeated his Republican opponent, 46,609 (53.14%) votes to 41,103 (46.86%).
Recount Procedure: Each campaign was allowed to appoint official recount watchers. In addition, the county hired official counters. Counters may NOT have been an election judge (including alternate) or on the Early Voting Ballot Board. However, Election clerks were allowed to count. The County Judge recount was livestreamed on the Hays County website. The DA recount was not.