Two days after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Texas lawmakers did not intentionally discriminate when they signed off on congressional and state House maps in 2013, the state is looking to use that victory to wrap up another case in which it’s accused of intentionally violating the voting rights of people of color. In a motion filed Wednesday, the Texas attorney general’s office asked U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos of Corpus Christi to reconsider her findings that the state’s voter ID law was enacted to purposefully discriminate against voters of color. An appellate court has already upheld the law, but — in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling — the state is now trying to convince the judge to reverse her findings of discrimination in the voter ID case in order to eliminate the possibility of a return to federal oversight of its election laws.
In the filing, the state argued that the 2011 voter ID law that opponents first challenged as discriminatory has now “changed significantly” and pointed to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal’s findings that the Legislature “succeeded in its goal” of addressing discriminatory flaws in the voter ID law in 2017.
It cited the Supreme Court’s verdict on the congressional and state House maps as findings that “cast irremovable doubt” on previous decisions that the voter ID law was also crafted with a discriminatory intent.