The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Saturday told the U.S. Department of Justice and other plaintiffs suing to overturn Texas’ voter identification law that they have a day to respond to an emergency motion by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott. Abbott’s filing Friday with the federal appeals court — made up of mostly conservative judges — asked for expedited consideration to undo a ruling by a lower court last week that struck down the state’s voter ID law. U.S. District Court Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos of Corpus Christi had agreed with the plaintiffs when she ruled Thursday that the Texas voter ID law, one of the strictest in the country, was unconstitutional. Ramos’ opinion didn’t include a final judgment, prompting Abbott to ask for guidance.
On Saturday, the appeals court released an order saying that Ramos’ final judgment had been filed and that the court considered Abbott’s last filing an “emergency application to stay final judgment pending appeal.”
Lauren Bean, spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office, said Saturday that the agency “will take all legal action necessary to avoid voter confusion and ensure that the law is in effect for the upcoming election.”