When they put signs on their lawn announcing their support for Texas Democratic gubernatorial nominee Beto O’Rourke, who is running against incumbent Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, Andrew and Olivia of Lakeway never expected they would be subjected to the “pure venom and hate” directed at them.
KTBC-TV of Austin reports that what the couple are calling “voter intimidation” came in the form of an anonymous letter that directly threatened them.
The page-long tirade begins by saying: “Thanks for showing your support forBeto O’Rourke,” which they believe is a reference to the Beto campaign signs they have on their lawn.
“I should feel safe having that sign in my yard,” said Olivia.
The letter goes on to dub them an “enemy of the state of Texas”, calling them “Socialists” and suggesting they support killing unborn babies and young people dying of overdoses.
The letter then takes an even darker turn, saying: “We also now know that you don’t believe in the Second Amendment and don’t have a gun to protect yourself and your family so you will not be able to protect yourselves. Don’t worry, there are lots of your neighbors that do believe in the Second Amendment and will decide if they want to help you or not if there is an issue…”
Olivia says she has no doubt the letter is a direct threat:
“People said it wasn’t a direct threat. The indirect threat, the underlying point of that, that’s there. That’s there in that letter.
“I feel that they’re trying to scare us away, and to leave.”
The letter concludes with this paragraph:
“We have given your name and address to a list of organizations that are shipping illegal immigrants…to people’s houses. Your house will be used as a ‘safe house’ where illegals will be dropped off for you to house. Some…might be drug mules or sex offenders.”
Asked if the thought the letter was indeed voter intimidation, Dr. Eddy Carder, a constitutional law professor at Prairie View A&M, remarked:
“Certainly the spirit of the letter and the character of the letter, the wording, the phraseology and the sentences and the intent behind the letter is aimed at intimidation. It infringes upon being very intent behind voting,”
Olivia noted that if the same thing happened to a supporter of Gov. Abbott, she would be just as outraged, “Absolutely. 100 percent. This is not a political party issue by any means. This is an issue of people feeling that it’s okay to spew negativity and fear.”
Here’s the full report from KTBC:
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