Texas Election Officials Seek Federal Assistance in Blocking Voting Law

Woman Voter Entering Voting Polling Place for USA Government Election
"Vote Here" sign at polling place. | Image from YinYang

A top-ranking Harris County election official and a deputy registrar are seeking an injunction against Abbott’s SB 1 voting law.

Isabel Longoria, from Harris County, and registrar Cathy Morgan sued the Attorney General of Texas over the matter in early December. They claim that SB 1 stops them from doing their job and conveying necessary information to voters.

On December 28, the two appealed to a federal court, along with the Department of Justice, which had already filed suit against SB 1. They requested that SB 1, Section 276.016(a)(1), be deemed invalid and not be enforced.

Morgan and Longoria’s complaint in the lawsuit claimed that being disallowed from encouraging mail-in ballots infringes upon the First Amendment. The lawsuit reads, “Remarkably, that new law makes it illegal to encourage an eligible voter to request a mail-in ballot, but it remains perfectly lawful to discourage an eligible voter from requesting a mail-in ballot. That one-sided restriction on speech is manifestly unconstitutional.”

SB 1 brings major changes to the elections held within Texas, with a largely Republican backing and a Democratic opposition. The bill disallows any election officials to “solicit,” or encourage, mail-in ballots. SB 1 also changes the voting hours, banning overnight early voting. NBC stated that some Democrats have gone as far as to refer to this law as “Jim Crow 2.0,” pointing out that the restrictions could target voters of color.

Election officials may pass along basic information regarding absentee voting, but the bill restricts the promotion of mail-in ballots. Longoria told NBC that the law restricts her right to free speech by not allowing her to pass on information she deems as vital for voters to know.

“SB 1 is deterring me from engaging in communications that would encourage voters to consider all of their voting options, engaging in outreach to voters regarding the benefits of the vote-by-mail process, educating voters about their rights, and helping voters to submit their respective applications,” she stated.

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  1. Randy joe Belcher

    I feel these laws need to be enforced the election officials need to be replaced because they have been in office and they are all leaning to the left very much so deliberately trying to destroy the voting in Texas our state attorney general is right in what he is doing and so is our government sb1 is a good law it requires IDs for voting and mail-in voting to be limited to people who can’t make it in to the voting polling places there is nothing wrong with this law it is fair and just and should be enforced no matter what the left says

    • Susan

      totally agree


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