Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick paid out his first voter fraud bounty to a progressive poll worker in Pennsylvania who caught a Republican voting illegally

·2 min read
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick stands with his hands in front of him
Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick speaks after Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced the reopening of more Texas businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic at a press conference at the Texas State Capitol in Austin on Monday, May 18, 2020. Lynda M. Gonzalez-Pool/Getty Images
  • Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick set a minimum $25,000 bounty in November 2020 for proof of voter fraud.

  • Eleven months later, the first and only recipient received their reward for turning in a case.

  • The winner was a progressive Pennsylvania poll worker who turned in a Republican for voting twice.

One week after the presidential election in 2020 where President Joe Biden toppled former President Donald Trump, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick set a bounty of up to $1 million to anyone who could find instances of voter fraud in the US.

Eleven months later, Patrick's finally doled out his first reward: the minimum amount of $25,000 to a progressive poll worker in Pennsylvania who turned in a man that voted twice, according to The Dallas Morning News.

The poll worker, identified as Eric Frank, told the publication that he received only received the minimum bounty reward because he was told greater rewards were reserved for "bigger fish."

"Was he looking for a celebrity or a political group as a whole?" he said. "I don't know what he meant by bigger fish."

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Several instances of voter fraud popped up in Pennsylvania after Patrick set the bounty - mostly people attempting to cast a vote in place of a dead relative - leading the state's lieutenant governor, John Fetterman, to relentlessly troll Patrick online while asking for the bounty reward.

"All I want for Christmas is my handsome reward from Dan Patrick," Fetterman tweeted in December 2020.  

Patrick's campaign spokesman told The Dallas Morning News that only the "original tipsters" would receive the prize.

Frank, however, was the original poll worker to submit a violation by Ralph Thurman, a 72-year-old Republican man who pleaded guilty in September 2021 to voting twice: once under his name and once using the name of his Democratic-aligned son.

Thurman was sentenced to three years of probation and is barred from voting for four years.

As for Frank, he said he plans to save the cash reward for a future home purchase, though he may donate some of it to charity.

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