During the last election cycle, Texans all over the state benefited from more voting opportunities, such as expansion of early voting, extended hours at the polling places, and more options to return vote-by-mail ballots. These are the kinds of measures that Texans want. With the enactment of SB 1, these measures are prohibited. SB 1 adds to the morass of our election laws by using broad and confusing language, creating barriers to voting, and adding criminal offenses.
The list below summarizes the League’s highest concerns. They are shared by a number of other nonpartisan groups as well.
Threatens election officials with criminal prosecution for enacting procedures to meet local
community needs and increase voter freedom;
Threatens advocacy groups and individuals with felony prosecution for providing needed
assistance to voters at polling locations and with mail ballots;
Limits the ability of election judges to remove disruptive or intimidating partisan poll
Allows partisan poll watchers to take election officials to court over perceived obstruction;
Requires voters using mail ballots to include the ID number contained in their registration
records when applying for or returning mail ballots;
Requires audits disproportionately targeting more populous counties that are duplicative
of audits required by legislation passed during the regular session.
Prohibits outdoor voting, even in situations involving natural disasters and prohibit
drive-through voting locations and mail ballot drop boxes;
Requires new procedures for purging lists of registered voters and threaten local officials
with loss of employment and civil penalties for failing to maintain voter lists to the
satisfaction of the Secretary of State;
See Review of SB1
- One good thing was included...
Provides voters an opportunity to electronically cure certain minor errors on mail ballots using the new electronic ballot tracking platform approved in the regular session.
By Cinde A Weatherby
See blog here