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November 30, 2012

House District 45 hearing continues after petition

NORMAN — Paula Roberts alleges irregularities in Nov. 6 election

The hearing of a petition by Democratic candidate Paula Roberts alleging irregularities in the Nov. 6 election for State House District 45 continues today in Cleveland County District Court.

Judge Tracy Schumacher will hear arguments by Greg Bledsoe, attorney for Roberts, and by Robert McCambell, the attorney representing Rep. Aaron Stiles, the Republican incumbent and unofficial winner of the election.

The hearing was continued from Nov. 20. That day, Bledsoe focused his arguments on seven provisional ballots that were not counted because those seven people gave different addresses than their registered voting addresses. Bledsoe said that while the addresses did not match the address of registration, their addresses were still within House District 45 and the votes should have been allowed.

This week, Bledsoe amended Roberts’ petition for the second time, much to the consternation of the Stiles camp.

McCambell, in a supplemental brief filed Tuesday, reminded the court that “legislative activity is currently under way” and that post-election allegations of irregularity should be dealt with in an expedited manner.

“Where there is an irregularity, a petitioner has the right to attack it. In this case, however, the petitioner wants to use this court’s time and subpoena power to start a post-election investigation to see if an irregularity can be found and to deny the rights of the voters to be represented,” according to McCambell’s supplemental brief.

“They don’t even know what the discrepancies are,” Stiles said, “because there aren’t any discrepancies. They are mounting a fishing expedition. They’re trying to interview witnesses on the witness stand. They lost the election. They lost the recount that night, and they lost the official recount. I don’t understand why they’re trying to win the election through litigation. They’re really inconveniencing a lot of people and a lot of voters just to get their way.”

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