Articles about voting issues in Texas.

Texas: In lawsuit, activists say Texas’ winner-take-all approach to the Electoral College is discriminatory | The Texas Tribune

Saying Texas’ current practice is discriminatory, a group of Hispanic activists and lawyers has sued the state in hopes of blocking it from awarding all of its Electoral College votes to one candidate during presidential elections. The lawsuit filed in federal court Wednesday calls on Texas to treat voters “in an equal manner” by abolishing that “winner-take-all” approach, which all but two states use. The suit, filed by the League of United Latin American Citizens and a coalition of Texas lawyers, says that approach violates the U.S. Constitution and the 1965 Voting Rights Act. It’s just one of many pending voting rights lawsuits arguing that Texas, which regularly votes Republican, has illegally discriminated against voters of color.  Read More

Texas: Disability rights group threatens to sue Texas over voter registration | Houston Chronicle

Lawyers for a disability rights group are threatening to sue the state for failing to provide voter registration services to Texans with disabilities who obtain job training from state agencies, a violation of federal law, according to a letter sent Monday afternoon. The letter, from lawyers with the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities and the Texas Civil Rights Project, states that under the 1993 National Voter Registration Act, Texas is mandated to make it easier for disabled people to register to vote if they receive job training from state agencies. Read More

Texas: State Defends Against Latino Voting-Rights Claims | Courthouse News

There are only two Latinos out of 18 judges on Texas’ highest courts, and a federal trial that started Monday will examine voters’ claims that the state’s electoral system for these courts dilutes the Latino vote. La Union Del Pueblo Entero, or LUPE, a nonprofit founded by the late migrant-rights activist Cesar Chavez, claims the election system for the Texas Supreme Court and Texas Court of Criminal Appeals is rigged against Latinos. Joined by seven Latino Texans, LUPE sued Texas in July 2016, alleging the state’s at-large system for electing judges for these courts dilutes the Latino vote in violation of the Voting Rights Act. LUPE is represented by the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, a nonpartisan Washington, D.C. nonprofit, and Texas RioGrande Legal Aid. LUPE overcame Texas’ arguments that it lacks standing by citing some startling statistics about the history of Hispanic judges on the courts. Read More

Texas: Case targeting Texas’ statewide elections of judges goes to trial today | The Texas Tribune

The list of voting rights challenges Texas is fighting in court lengthens this week with the beginning of a federal trial in a case challenging the way the state elects judges to its highest courts. As part of a lawsuit filed on behalf of seven Latino voters and a civil rights organization, U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos of Corpus Christi will consider whether the statewide method of electing judges on the Texas Supreme Court and Court of Criminal Appeals dilutes the voting power of Texas Latinos and keeps them from electing their preferred candidates. Read More

Texas: Displaced Harvey Victims With Suspended Registration Can Still Vote In The 2018 Primary Elections | Houston Public Media

Many Houstonians who’ve been forced to live in hotels or an Airbnb since their home was flooded by Hurricane Harvey may find out online that their voter registration has been suspended. But that won’t stop displaced residents from being able to vote in the March primaries. “Absolutely, they can still vote,” said Sue Hastings, Manager of Voter Registration at the Harris County Tax Assessor’s Office. Read More

Texas: Hurricane Harvey victims shocked to find out voter registration was suspended | KTRK

Displaced Hurricane Harvey victims still struggling to recover are now having to worry about one more thing: whether they can vote in next month’s primary. The problem of suspended voter registrations began bubbling up this week. Nikki Thomason, one of hundreds of people displaced when her Thornwood neighborhood filled with water, never thought her right to vote could be swept away too. “Angry, angry, you know it’s kind of funny the people who are angriest with the government right now, are the people whose votes have been suspended,” she said. Read More

Texas: Changing redistricting rules could change who Texas sends to Congress – dramatically | The Texas Tribune

Drawing clever political districts is one way politicians in Texas and elsewhere avoid accountability — by protecting themselves from voters who disagree with them. They do this by stuffing weirdly shaped geographic districts with voters who agree with them. A new examination of redistricting shows how effective legislators have done that nationally — and in Texas, and how changing the rules for drawing political maps could dramatically change who represents you at the state and federal Capitols. FiveThirtyEight unleashed a fascinating series of maps for their Gerrymandering Project series Thursday as the U.S. Supreme Court considers several cases that could solidify or disrupt redistricting practices in Texas and other states.  Read More

Texas: New law forces Texans who want to vote by mail to apply by mail first | Houston Chronicle

A small change took place during the state special legislative session last year, one that at least one local election administrator expects will make it harder for Texans to apply to vote by mail. Texans who want to apply to vote by mail in the state must now do so by mail. In the past, voters could also apply by email or fax. Those options still exist, but they must be supplemented with a mailed application, received by the early voting clerk after no more than four business days. The change, which was passed as part of SB 5, would “make it more challenging for voters to apply for that ballot,” Fort Bend County Election Administrator John Oldham wrote in a news release. Read More

Texas: Dallas Democrats strike back at GOP lawsuit to remove 128 candidates from primary ballot | Dallas Morning News

Lawyers for 14 of the 128 Democratic candidates whom the Dallas County GOP is trying to have removed from the March primary ballot have asked a court to dismiss the case. According to a document filed late Monday on behalf of 14 candidates threatened with removal, the Dallas County Republican Party and its chairwoman, Missy Shorey, have no standing to bring the suit, since they are not candidates in the election. “The DCRP is clearly not a candidate and Shorey does not allege that she is a candidate for any office,” according to the filing from the lawyers. “As such, neither the DCRP nor Shorey have the necessary personal interest to have standing to seek the removal of any candidate from the ballot.” Read More

Texas: Trump voting commission asked for Texas lists flagging Hispanic voter surnames | The Washington Post

President Trump’s voting commission asked every state and the District for detailed voter registration data, but in Texas’s case it took an additional step: It asked to see Texas records that identify all voters with Hispanic surnames, newly released documents show. In buying nearly 50 million records from the state with the nation’s second-largest Hispanic population, a researcher for the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity checked a box on two Texas public voter data request forms explicitly asking for the “Hispanic surname flag notation,” to be included in information sent to the voting commission, according to copies of the signed and notarized state forms. White House and Texas officials said the state’s voter data was never delivered because a lawsuit brought by Texas voting rights advocates after the request last year temporarily stopped any data handoff. Read More