In an epic showdown that dates back to the 1960s civil rights era, Texas was in court the week of July 9 to defend its new voter identification law that the Department of Justice says does not pass muster under the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
The Texas law, known as SB 14, requires that voters present government-issued photo identification when they cast their votes. Because of their history of racial discrimination and civil rights abuses, laws passed by Texas and other southern states that affect the voting process are still subject to “preclearance” by the DOJ under Section 5 of the VRA. In March, the DOJ found that SB 14 would have possible negative effects on minority voters, so it filed a lawsuit in federal court in Washington DC. …..
“It’s basically a solution in search of a problem,” says Andy Brown, a lawyer who heads up his own firm and serves as the chair of the Travis County Democratic Party in Austin. “There is not a problem in Texas with in-person voter fraud.”