Jim Jenkins did not “knowingly” vote in an election for which he was not qualified to vote. Jim Jenkins followed the Texas Supreme Court decision, Mills v Bartlett, in which the definition of residence for the purpose of voter registration is well settled. Jenkins exhausted every possible legal avenue to ensure he followed the law prior to voting in the 2010 Woodlands RUD election.
Contrary to this article in the Conroe Courier, the verdict, described by David Glicker, prosecutor for the Texas Attorney General’s office was NOT “appropriate”. Jim Jenkins changed his residence to The Residence Inn to vote in the RUD and intended to return there in the future. Conveniently disregarded by the Courier reporter, two people living in The Woodlands also changed their residence to vote in the RUD to a commercial property they owned. Both this couple and Jim Jenkins had every right to change their residences, yet the couple was not charged with voting in an election for which they were not qualified to vote.
The 1991 law passed by the Texas Legislature weakened the Texas definition of “residence” but recall our 41st President of the United States, George H.W. Bush. As noted in this CNN Money article from January 1992:
“Bush maintains his legal voting residence and domicile in Texas….Texas domicile law is solely concerned with intent. To confirm the state as the First Couple’s legal domicile, Bush simply signed a declaration stating that he intended eventually to return to Texas permanently.”
“Their only Texas property is an unimproved Houston lot of 33 feet x 160 feet…the few nights a year they sleep in Houston, they rent a three-room suite at the Houstonian, a hotel that is their official Texas residence…”
Even the Montgomery County Election Administrator believed Jim Jenkins was eligible to vote in the RUD election. The Montgomery County District Attorney Brett Ligon did not prosecute Jim Jenkins due the Texas Secretary of State Election Law opinion GSC-1, which includes “the presumption is in favor of the voters own assessment of the facts and his or her intent” and the nexus of including residence as a state of mind.
It is not a “scheme” or “conspiracy” for citizens of these United States to petition their government for redress through legal means at the voting booth and in running for elected office. And meting out a three year prison sentence and a $10,000 fine for following the law is a travesty of justice. The proper remedy to the 1991 law is through the Texas Legislature and not the courtroom.