MALDEF Challenges Texas Voter ID Law

The following is part of a press release from MALDEF:

Today, MALDEF filed legal papers opposing an attempt by the State of Texas to secure federal approval for its new Voter ID law. The intervention was filed on behalf of two Latino voters and two organizations that conduct voter registration and turnout campaigns in the Latino community: Southwest Voter Registration Education Project and Mi Familia Vota Education Fund. The lawsuit by Texas seeks permission from the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. to impose identification procedures that discriminate against Latinos in Texas. The U.S. Department of Justice blocked Texas’ Voter ID Law earlier this month on the grounds that the law disproportionately harms Latino voters. MALDEF has moved to intervene its clients in the case to defend the voting rights of Texas Latinos and to defend the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act of 1965…

According to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, Texas is one of 16 states required to receive federal approval before changing voter laws, because of the State’s history of discriminating against minorities at the polls. This move comes on the heels of the recent Texas redistricting battle, in which MALDEF litigated successfully to secure two new congressional districts in which Latinos have the opportunity to elect their candidate of choice. MALDEF intends to ensure that Texas Latinos are able to realize that new power in November at the polls.

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