Judicial Watch • Texas Sues DOJ Over Voter ID Law

Texas Sues DOJ Over Voter ID Law

Texas Sues DOJ Over Voter ID Law

JANUARY 25, 2012

Texas is suing the Department of Justice (DOJ) in federal court for blocking the implementation of a state voter identification law—passed to deter and detect election fraud—the Obama Administration claims discriminates against minorities.

The Texas Legislature passed the measure in 2011 and six months ago it was submitted to the DOJ for approval. More than a dozen states—including Kansas, Indiana, Tennessee and Wisconsin—have similar laws that require voters to show government-issued photo identification at the polls and the Obama Administration has launched a campaign to challenge them all.

Liberals claim the laws are discriminatory because many minorities are too poor or too ignorant to get a valid identification—provided free in most states that have passed voter ID laws—that proves they are who they say they are. In fact, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the Florida congresswoman who chairs the Democratic National Committee, says voter ID laws are a “full-scale-assault” on minority voters designed to “rig” elections for Republicans.

With that said, the administration is utilizing the DOJ as a political tool to challenge voter ID measures like one already upheld by the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) in 2008. In that case SCOTUS upheld Indiana’s voter ID law, ruling that the state’s interest in protecting the integrity of the voting process outweighed the insufficiently proven burdens the law may impose on voters. “There is no question about the legitimacy or importance of the State’s interest in counting only the votes of eligible voters,” the nation’s highest court said in its decision.

This hasn’t deterred the DOJ’s mission to eliminate voter ID laws. In the Texas case, the agency must approve the measure because the Federal Voting Rights Act prohibits changes to election laws in certain states without federal clearance. The Texas Secretary of State’s Office has been waiting for the DOJ preclearance since last July, but the feds continue stalling, essentially blocking the law’s implementation.

Among the stall tactics employed by the DOJ is requiring Texas to provide extensive information before ruling one way or the other. For instance, the state must tell the DOJ the number of registered voters by race and Spanish surname in possession of a driver’s license or other form of photo ID. It must also provide the number of registered voters with Spanish surnames who don’t have a driver’s license.   

In its complaint, filed this week in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Texas says it doesn’t record citizens’ race when they register to vote so it is unable to determine the racial makeup of registered voters who lack state-issued IDs.  “Indeed, the very reason Texas refuses to maintain racial and ethnic data on its list of registered voters is to facilitate a colorblind electoral process, and Texas adopted this race-blind voter-registration policy shortly after the enactment of the 1965 Voting Rights Act,” the complaint says.

State officials are asking the court to approve its voter ID law, assuring that the measure will not deny or abridge the right to vote on account of race or color, nor will it deny or abridge the right of any citizen of the United States to vote because he is a member of a language minority group.

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  • garymccurry

    if they r too ignorant to get an id they sure as hey don’t need to be voting for what is supposed to be the highest office in the land, what a joke!

  • James G Conley

    The Real Problem Here IS,With our Process No ONE IS Positivly Identified As A MINORITY of Any RACE.
    Allowing OFFICIALS To Contact The Individual Voter,And Thereby Influenceing The Outcome of The Election!
    And Commiting “VOTER FRAUD”…………………….
    And a most definate YES!,It is an Insult Against the MINORITYS,For The ADMINISTRATION TO MAKE SUCH A COMMENT ABOUT ANY ONES ETHENICITY!,None of their BUSSINESS,And Personally Speaking,I Went Approximatly 5 Months in the 5th Grade,Before I Was Forced to Quit School,In Order to Take care of my Step Mother,After she had a Major Stroke!,Does That Make Me Stupid?Maybe by some peoples Standard,But I Served in the U.S.Navy,Worked After Discharge In My Home town POLICE DEPARTMENT,Drove a Truck Either Full Time or Part time for 44years,Worked For the Local Fire Dpartment,Raised Four Children and a Wife,Along with myself!……I Consider my self ,BLESSED !…………P.S. I Also Was Fire Marshal,Arson Investigator,Taught Classes at Texas A&M,Firemans Training school,And Other Colleges As Well!……………..!.

  • maiingan07

    It is unfortunate with all of this publicity, minorities are still ignorant to the fact they need valid identification to vote. It would lead me to believe if this were true there would be a stampede of the minorities or any other to receive their proper identification. Even so, isn’t it obvious you need identification in case an officer of the law has an interest in questioning you? When I turned eighteen I knew the importance of getting valid identification right away even though I did not drive at the time. I feel this stance of DoJ is shaky at best. I cannot understand, yes probably due to my niaveness, how the DoJ would even use this line due to its faultiness after only a moment of thought. For goodness sake in front of a judge, pretty insulting I say.

    To me, and I believe to many others this is quite the farce to gain votes from individuals who do to have the right to vote in our country because they are here illegally. I mean it is sooo obvious to anyone who can read this article, but yet they follow through with it. Quite the arrogance. I hope, I really hope they fall flat on their face.

    In addition, what is their line of reasoning demanding the state of Texas to let them know how many of each race and if they have a Spanish surname and if so, how many of them do not hold a valid id. The DoJ should have known ahead of time the 1965 Voting Rights Act Texas had enacted. One would think they would have done their homework, or is it just another act of ignorance?

  • Kamaatz

    If they are too ignorant to get a voter ID, they sure don’t need to be voting.

  • kylefclark

    Holder & his far left liberal incompetents, should be removed from their current positions now!