WASHINGTON — Siding with Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton, the Texas Supreme Court overruled a court order allowing mail-in ballots to be distributed to voters worried about their health when going to the polls. Texas law currently requires a reason to request an absentee ballot — instead of offering voters an alternative to in-person voting, the GOP would rather make it as difficult as possible for people to cast a ballot.
Texas just had its largest single-day increase in new coronavirus cases, but the GOP is continuing to ignore public health guidelines and advance its agenda of voter disenfranchisement.
“This is just the latest Republican attempt to limit voting rights because they know that when more people vote, Democrats win,” said Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee President Jessica Post. “Texans deserve safe options to exercise their right to vote without jeopardizing their health. Forcing people to choose between their lives and their vote is cruel, dangerous, and about as undemocratic as it gets.”
Between closing hundreds of polling places, gerrymandering district maps, forcing people to wait in long lines to exercise their right to vote, and creating massive hurdles for older and disabled voters, the Texas GOP has been actively engaging in voter suppression for years. Opposing mail-in ballots — despite the state’s massive surge in coronavirus cases just last week — is just one more way for Republicans to suppress the vote.
“Texas Republicans are scrambling to maintain their fragile majority and are forcing voters to pay the price,” added Post. “Democrats, on the other hand, will continue to fight for voting rights through November and beyond.”