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“At least 16,400 Texans who voted in the November election wouldn’t have been able to cast ballots if the state’s voter identification law had been in full effect, state voting records show.” This report from the Austin American-Statesman is a chilling reminder of what experts agree is the true intent of such laws: disenfranchising voters.
“Travis County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir said the volume of the declarations validates the concerns that the law’s opponents raised. “The voter ID law was going to take away the legal right to vote of 2,300 people” in the county, she said. The voters who signed those declarations, she said, “tended to be poor, tend to be elderly — maybe they weren’t born in a hospital or had other extenuating circumstances.”
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, whose office has defended the law, didn’t respond to a request for comment.”
However, former Texas Secretary of State Carlos Cascos, an Abbott appointee who stepped down after the November election, admits that the law would have prevented voters from casting their ballots: “Asked if that meant those voters would have been disenfranchised, Cascos said, “I would agree. That is a way to look at it.”
“And, he observed, the number of potentially disenfranchised voters “might not be important for a presidential race or a statewide race, but it very well might matter for local votes, where there can be really small margins.”
“At the end of the day, we want to make sure every qualified Texan who can vote should be allowed to vote,” he said, “(16,000) people wanted to vote and got to vote, so that’s great.”
Full story in the Austin American-Statesman.