Trial to Determine if Texas' Voter ID Law Is, In Fact, Racist, Begins Today in Federal Court

Categories: Legal Battles

Thumbnail image for AbbottPerry.jpg
Don't even get Rick Perry and Greg Abbott started on the Voting Rights Act.
Last May, Texas joined the growing roster of states with a voter ID law requiring those seeking to exercise their most fundamental civic duty to present a state-issued ID before casting a ballot. Like a driver's license or, this being Texas, a concealed handgun permit.

And that was that, at least for the minute or two it took for Attorney General Eric Holder to remind the state how it used to make it very, very difficult for black people to vote and, as a result, had to get approval from the Justice Department to make potentially discriminatory changes to the election law. So, the Obama Administration blocked implementation of the bill under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, being Greg Abbott ("My job is pretty simple. I go into the office, I sue the federal government, and then I go home."), promptly challenged the constitutionality of the law in federal court.

The trial kicks off today in D.C. before a three-judge panel. The arguments haven't changed much since January. Republicans still say voter ID laws are necessary to prevent a flood of millions nine fraudulent votes from unfairly tipping elections. And Democrats still insist that the laws will block many more legitimate votes and discourage voters, particularly minorities, from showing up to the polls.

There's a host of analysis out in advance of the trial, as Michael Li points out. A ruling is expected by the end of August, though that won't be the end. Here's betting that this one winds up before the Supreme Court.

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11 comments
Mr. Hand
Mr. Hand

The fraud is rampant in the mail in and absentee ballots.   And to say it isn't rampant and present is iresponsible and oblivious to fact.  Look at the Medrano case here in Dallas last year? I support all efforts to circumvent voter fraud, but the efforts need to be directed at mail in/absentee ballots, not walk in.  And the argument about the old/poor person not being able to get an id is bullshit, and those claiming it know it.

Brenda Marks
Brenda Marks

You are the only unstable one here.  You could use a few anger management sessions. 

Russp
Russp

Proponents of this law say it will prevent rampant voter fraud, opponents say it will likely prevent some qualified voters from voting. Does anyone have any REAL numbers backing up either of these arguments? I find it hard to believe many people showing up at the polls would not be qualified voters (mail in ballots are another issue) and I don't see that many people in this day and age not having some form of acceptable ID since you need it to do just about anything.

Joejoethedogfaceboy
Joejoethedogfaceboy

I'll make the same exact comment I make every time this story comes up:  if there truly is wide-spread, election affecting, voter fraud occurring in Texas, why are the Republicans trying to stop it?  If election fraud exists at a level that is affecting the outcome of elections, isn't the logical conclusion that the Republicans (who hold a vast majority of the elected positions) are *benefitting* from it?  

icowrich
icowrich

Actually, there is evidence, now, that the elderly (who lean Republican) are disproportionately disenfranchised by such laws, since they are less likely to drive (and so, no longer need licenses).  The minority communities are adapting faster than expected thanks to minority registration drives, but nobody is really doing that for the elderly.

Guest
Guest

Seriously? Addresses not matching photo IDs? You do realize that much of the urban minority population is highly mobile, right? Addresses matching should not be a deterrent to voting. 

TrayvonasaurusRexxx
TrayvonasaurusRexxx

White-guilt libtard "progressive advocacy journalism" horse-shit article.

Gat2KeepOnMovin
Gat2KeepOnMovin

Because paternalist liberals believe that everyone is helpless. Women? Helpless and too stupid to do anything for themselves. Blacks? Helpless and too stupid to do anything for themselves. Hispanics? Helpless and too stupid to do anything for themselves. They all need saving by self hating great white knights.

Rod
Rod

   You can joke all you want about the scarcity of fraudulent voting, but it is occuring in Texas. My mother went to vote and the rolls showed she had already early voted. This happened to her TWICE. And the Medrano case of voter fraud would never have happened with voter ID. The addresses would not have matched the phot IDs.

Confused
Confused

You have to wonder about a government that doesn't require proof of citizenship to vote but does require proof of insurance to drive. 

Jesse
Jesse

I don't see why Texas should pay any attention to Eric Holder and his Justice Department at all. All of Obama's big donors on Wall Street, the ones who caused the 2008 crash and rigged the LIBOR rate have told him to run along like a good boy and not prosecute them, and he has, using his time instead to pick and choose tiny little easily intimidated targets coordinated to boost Obama's identity politics reelection campaign. We should do the same thing as Wall Street. Run along, Eric, that's a good little AG. Continue not enforcing federal laws everywhere. Lie to Congress if you think that's a smart move. We've got things squared away here. What are you going to do if we just ignore you, Eric? Invade us? Threaten to have Obama carpet bomb us with another fantasy autobiography? Thugocracy Chicago politics and selective law enforcement can only work where you've got helpless little peons easily cowed by it. I don't think that describes Texas very well, and I don't think we should help underwrite Holder's massively corrupt enterprise by subscribing to it.

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