FORT WORTH, Texas — There were some missing poll workers in North Texas on Tuesday morning, causing issues to start the 2022 Texas primary election.
On Tuesday morning, Tarrant County was short 10 poll workers from the Democratic Party and two poll workers from the Republican Party, according to Tarrant County's Elections Administrator Heider Garcia.
During primary elections, Texas law requires there to be both a Democratic Party setup and a Republican Party setup, each opened up independently.
"It's literally two elections happening in the same place," Garcia said during Tuesday's Tarrant County Commissioners Court Meeting.
The 10 missing poll workers from the Democratic side caused delays in the morning. Under Texas law, these centers can't have voters from one of the two parties not served at a polling location.
Garcia said his team asked some Republican judges to have their party's poll workers help out and set up the Democratic voting machines. This is allowed as an "emergency appointment procedure."
"Literally unpack their equipment and set it up," Garcia said.
At a few of the locations, Garcia said the Republican judges refused to set up the Democratic Party side. In these cases, Tarrant County officials moved some Democratic poll workers at sites well-staffed to get these other locations opened.
"We have to cover that vacancy or we'll have to shut down the site," Garcia said.
As of 11 a.m., Garcia said his staff had gotten through the rough start of the day and all locations were open.