Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced the arrest of Rachel Rodriguez on Wednesday for election fraud, illegal voting, unlawfully assisting people voting by mail, and unlawfully possessing an official ballot.
Each charge constitutes a felony under the Texas Election Code. If convicted, she could face up to 20 years in prison.
Rodriguez was captured on video during a Project Veritas sting operation last October while she was engaging in vote harvesting during the 2020 presidential election.
She was recorded talking on the phone with an unidentified person, saying 5,000 votes for Joe Biden and Democratic candidate M.J. Hegar would cost $55,000 in cash.
“My people are undercover because some of them are Republicans,” she said. “Some of them are Democrats. Some of them are just wanting to get the right people in office, so some of the Republicans are precinct chairs that cannot be known because they could get kicked out, but they want to help Biden – and so that’s how they’re helping me.”
She was caught on video encouraging an elderly woman to change her vote on a mail-in ballot from Republican Sen. John Cornyn to Hegar, then giving her a shawl as a gift in violation of election law.
In the video Rodriguez admitted to often giving gifts to seniors and ex-prisoners to secure votes for certain candidates.
Rodriguez said, “Yeah, I’m getting the Biden vote out, but I mean I’m not going to do it for free – in other words, if they don’t pay me, I’m like, ‘excuse me?'”
According to a press release from Paxton’s office, “The Election Fraud Division of the Office of the Attorney General reviewed dozens of hours of unedited, raw footage, which led to this arrest. In an uncharacteristic moment of honesty, Rodriguez acknowledged on video that what she was doing is illegal and that she could go to jail for it.”
“Many continue to claim that there’s no such thing as election fraud,” Paxton said in a statement. “We’ve always known that such a claim is false and misleading, and [Wednesday] we have additional hard evidence. This is a victory for election integrity and a strong signal that anyone who attempts to defraud the people of Texas, deprive them of their vote, or undermine the integrity of elections will be brought to justice.”
“The shocking and blatantly illegal action documented by Project Veritas demonstrates a form of election fraud my office continually investigates and prosecutes. I am fiercely committed to ensuring the voting process is secure and fair throughout the state, and my office is prepared to assist any Texas county in combating this insidious, un-American form of fraud.”
Paxton’s office said the investigation is ongoing and anyone involved in or with knowledge of the organized vote harvesting scheme is encouraged to come forward and cooperate with the Office of the Attorney General.