Quantcast
Connect with us

Texas GOP doubles down on voter suppression push — targeting veterans, the elderly and voters with disabilities

Published

on

Texas Republicans are pushing two new bills that critics say are aimed at suppressing voter turnout after a similar bill died days before the end of their legislative session.

On Sunday, a State Senate bill that was passed with only Republican support, which would have increased criminal penalties for voter registration-related crimes and made it harder for volunteers to help elderly and disabled voters get to the polls, effectively died after it missed a legislative deadline in the House, The Texas Observer reported.

ADVERTISEMENT

With the legislative session drawing to an end, Republican lawmakers have passed two more bills that critics say are intended to reduce voter turnout.

House Bill 1888 would ban mobile polling stations, which help college students, the elderly and low-income residents cast ballots, from being mobile. The bill would require these temporary branch polling places to remain in just one location for the duration of the early voting period. Mobile polling stations are currently used as a way to address demand and wait times for groups that may have difficulty getting to a polling location, like rural voters, college students and residents at long-term care facilities.

State Sen. Joan Huffman, a Houston Republican who sponsored the bill, said that the mobile polling places were being abused by “targeting desirable voting populations at the exclusion of others.” She rejected concerns from Democrats about disadvantaged groups being hurt by the move, saying that those who need to make arrangements to vote “have time to do that.”

But Charles Mario Henry, a San Antonio U.S. Army veteran with impaired mobility, said the move would also hurt vets.

“This is going to take away their ability to access these polls. … We don’t need to have voter suppression laws, especially after serving the country honorably,” Henry told The Texas Observer. “I’m sure, on both sides of the aisle, Republicans and Democrats, we can all agree that taking away those rights is not something we want to do as a state.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Republicans also doubled down on the state’s failed attempted voter purge. Earlier this year, Texas Secretary of State David Whitley announced that the state had identified nearly 100,000 people he claimed were illegally registered to vote. Whitley later admitted that many of the people on the list were actually naturalized citizens and a federal judge banned the state from removing anyone from the rolls without court permission, slamming Whitley for abusing “the power of government to strike fear and anxiety and to intimidate the least powerful among us.”

Republican state Sen. Bryan Hughes introduced an amendment this week that would require the secretary of state to verify voter eligibility by confirming their citizenship status on a monthly basis.

Democrats said the bill raised the same concerns as Whitley’s failed purge attempt.

ADVERTISEMENT

“My concern is that we’re just going to put a target on naturalized citizens and keep them from being eligible to vote,” San Antonio Democrat José Menendez told The Texas Observer.

“At the end of the day, there are still some problems with tying in the review of the voter rolls with the DPS records, especially because that process has been exposed to be faulty to begin with,” added Zenén Jaimes Pérez, communications director for the Texas Civil Rights Project. “This process will be a waste of time and money on the part of the state.”

ADVERTISEMENT


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Central Park incident just one more example of white women using their status to terrorize black men: NYT’s Charles Blow

Published

on

Amy Cooper is just the latest example of white women using their privilege and femininity to terrorize black men, according to a new column from Charles Blow.

The New York Times columnist explains that a video recording of an incident involving Cooper, an investment manager, and Christian Cooper, a science editor, has a long and shameful historical precedent.

"This racial street theater against black people is an endemic, primal feature of the Republic," Blow write. "Specifically, I am enraged by white women weaponizing racial anxiety, using their white femininity to activate systems of white terror against black men. This has long been a power white women realized they had and that they exerted."

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

New Zealand epidemiologist: ‘We look at Trump’s behavior and we’re horrified’

Published

on

To learn how New Zealand has largely eliminated COVID-19, we continue our extended interview with Michael Baker, an epidemiologist who is a member of the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Technical Advisory Group and advising the government on its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He describes how the country’s response compares to the government actions in the United States and worldwide.

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The Quarantine Report. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González, as we bring you Part 2 of our discussion of New Zealand.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump White House hammered for covering up their own economic projections as jobs vanish

Published

on

The Trump White House has decided against releasing midyear economic projections this summer, breaking precedent at a time when unemployment is expected to top 20 percent.

The Washington Post reports that the administration is not releasing updated economic projections that "would almost certainly codify an administration assessment that the coronavirus pandemic has led to a severe economic downturn" with massive job losses that have topped 36 million in just two months.

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image