Injunction allows mass registrations
A federal judge in Galveston on Thursday partially blocked Texas' new voter laws that critics argue prevent large voter registration drives. At issue is a law requiring deputy voter registrars live in the Lone Star State.
The groups Voting for America and Project Vote sued saying that amounts to voter suppression. Backers argue the law is meant to cut down on fraud.
No word yet whether the state attorney general's office will appeal the injunction.
U.S. District Judge Gregg Costa's ruling allows the groups to move forward with large-scale registration drives aimed at reaching millions of African-Americans and Latinos residents, who are eligible but still not registered to vote.
The court rejected claims of Texas that the new restrictions were required to prevent fraud, holding that “if these practices did contribute to fraud, concrete examples of such fraud would likely exist from decades of experience. But no such evidence was introduced for the Court to weigh against the harm to Plaintiffs.”
The court also enjoined enforcement of existing provisions of Texas law which Texas interpreted as banning deputy voter registrars from “accepting or handling applications from residents of counties other than the county in which the person is appointed as a VDR,” finding the requirement unconstitutionally burdensome."