Today, a three-judge U.S. District Court panel in Washington D.C., has overturned a controversial Texas voter Photo ID Law (SB 14) which many activists have called among the most restrictive in the nation. For example, the law would have precluded students from using ID’s issued by Texas colleges yet would have allowed gun licenses as proof of voter eligibility.
Texas is one of many states (mostly in the old Confederacy) that comes under special Federal scrutiny arising from the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act (1965), which sought to eliminate segregationist ‘Jim Crow Laws’ denying African-Americans equal rights and access to the polls.
This is yet another recent voting rights victory in the fight against Republican efforts nationwide to both disenfranchise large segments of traditionally Democratic voting demographics;…students, minorities, and the poor and elderly….and to suppress turnout through voter intimidation at the polls. These new Right-Wing inspired requirements have sprung up not coincidentally with Barack Obama’s election as our first African-American president. This Website has aggressively reported on similar efforts in key ‘Swing-States’ like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and Nevada among many other states where Republican legislatures are writing these laws for signing into law by Republican governors.
As reported by NBC News, in its decision today, the Court held:
“Texas, seeking to implement its voter ID law, bears the burden of proof and must therefore show that SB 14 lacks retrogressive effect. But as we have found, everything Texas has submitted as affirmative evidence is unpersuasive, invalid, or both,” the opinion said.
“Moreover, uncontested record evidence conclusively shows that the implicit costs of obtaining SB 14-qualifying ID will fall most heavily on the poor and that a disproportionately high percentage of African Americans and Hispanics in Texas live in poverty. We therefore conclude that SB 14 is likely to lead to ‘retrogression in the position of racial minorities with respect to their effective exercise of the electoral franchise.’”
Republican elected officials and party leaders have, more recently, been much more candid about their efforts to drive down voter registration, democratic participation and turnout in the November election, most notably by the top-elected Republican leader…second in the line of succession to the presidency (after V.P. Joe Biden)…Speaker of the House, John Boehner, who made a cynical admission in that regard.
Here are few recent, related AI articles drawing attention to the Republican Voter Disenfranchisement Crusade….