Here’s How Voter ID Laws are Keeping Voters From Casting a Ballot

Some people got to cast a provisional ballot, but those aren’t always counted.

By Rhonda FanningMarch 17, 2016 11:29 am,

Texas election officials are getting sued in federal court, again. The Texas Civil Rights Project has filed a new suit against state officials. The TCRP says the state is not registering voters when they change their driver’s license address online.

Austin Reporter Ashley Lopez talks about it in this story from KUT, but I still had a few questions, so she stepped into the Standard studios to explain.

On the change of information requests:

“It wasn’t formally processed. … I spoke to one or two voters who said they got the paperwork, but it had to be mailed in. Other people didn’t get a prompt. Other poeple assumed that they had that paperwork processed because they checked it (online) and they assumed, because they were already existing registered voters, that just their address would be updated.”

On people’s ability to cast a ballot:

“Most of them … had to cast provisional ballots. It’s not really a ballot. It’s ‘We’re going to let you vote and then check it out later.’ There’s a high rate of provisional ballots not being counted.”

On how this lawsuit will affect the voter ID law:

“It’s anybody’s guess. I assume if the court feels like there are some real concerns with voter ID, and there’s evidence in the primary election that it did make it harder to vote, they would want to settle that before a big general election. This is a presidential year, so I guess it just depends how the justices feel about the law.”

On checking your own registration:

“If you’re really concerned, if you don’t know if you did things right, I think it’s worth calling an election supervisor. Your county clerk can pull that information up. Also then make sure you have the right ID.”