A Texas woman just got the bad news that voter fraud has consequences. Her story is a shocker and based just on this, it is way too easy to vote illegally.
Forget about the prison sentence for a minute, she just checked a box on a form and was able to vote for 10 years. 10 years illegally voting based on checking a box and nothing else.
Also, she was offered a deal to avoid jail – she is a mother of 4 – but she was afraid to be deported if she took the probation deal so now she will do 8 years and then be deported.
From NBC: A Texas appeals court upheld the conviction of green card holder Rosa Maria Ortega for voter fraud on Wednesday, cementing a sentence of eight years in jail and a likely deportation.
Ortega, a mother of four, reportedly thought she was able to vote because she was a permanent resident. She voted five times between 2004 and 2014 — once for the attorney general, Ken Paxton, who later prosecuted her, according to her attorney. She also reportedly served as a poll worker.
“She doesn’t know. She’s got this [green] card that says ‘resident’ on it, so she doesn’t mark that she’s not a citizen,” her attorney told the Washington Post said. “She had no ulterior motive beyond what she thought, mistakenly, was her civic duty.”
Prosecutors said that Ortega had correctly told authorities she was a resident alien on a driver’s license form, while incorrectly checking the U.S. citizen box for the purpose of voting, undercutting her claims that it was an innocent mistake.
From The Star-Telegram:A Grand Prairie mother of four sentenced to eight years in prison for illegally voting had been offered a plea deal in August for two years’ probation but rejected it because it would have likely led to her deportation, according to court documents and her lawyer.
Instead, Rosa Maria Ortega’s attorney — who was not representing her in August — said he worked with the Texas attorney general’s office in recent weeks to arrange a dismissal of the case.
The deal, which would have helped ensure that Ortega remained in the country, would have included Ortega testifying before the Legislature about issues with the voting process, said her attorney, Clark Birdsall.
The attorney general’s office, which was jointly prosecuting the case with the Tarrant County district attorney’s office, approved the dismissal deal, Birdsall said. But shortly before the case went to trial last week, he said, Tarrant County District Attorney Sharen Wilson rejected it — a statement her office disputes.
Ortega, 37, a green card holder who came to the U.S. as an infant, was found guilty of illegally voting in Dallas County in the 2012 general election and the 2014 Republican primary runoff.
Sam Jordan, a spokeswoman for the Wilson’s office, said Monday that Wilson did not nix any deal that Ortega might have had in place with the attorney general’s office.
“We offered a plea deal to Ms. Ortega for probation [in August] and she rejected it,” Jordan said.