State to file appeal to keep Texas Voter ID law - KXXV Central Texas News Now

State to file appeal to keep Texas Voter ID law

Source: MGN Source: MGN
McLennan County Administrator Kathy Van Wolfe and Democratic Chairwoman Mary Duty talking about November Election McLennan County Administrator Kathy Van Wolfe and Democratic Chairwoman Mary Duty talking about November Election

On Tuesday, the Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced plans to appeal the federal appeals court ruling that struck down the Texas voter ID law in July.

Last month, the  U.S. 5th District Court in New Orleans found the law violated provisions of the Voting Rights Act and ordered changes before the November election.

Texas AG’s Office Director of Communications Marc Rylander sent the following statement regarding the State’s appeal:

“To protect the integrity of voting in the State of Texas, our office will appeal the Voter ID ruling of the Fifth Circuit to the United States Supreme Court,” Rylander said.

On Tuesday morning, the McLennan County Democratic Party and the Republican Party held a press conference regarding changes to the voting ID law and encourage citizens to participate in the election process.

"Part of the reason I am here today, as a Citizen of McLennan County and a voter is to encourage the media, our community, our civic organizations to do everything they can to let people people where to vote, when to vote and why to vote," Democratic Party Chair Mary Duty said.

Duty who said the representative for the Republican Party was unable to attend the press conference spoke about the Secretary of State outlining the additional ID options for the November elections, which will be in effect if the current ruling remains in place.

Elections Administrator Kathy Van Wolfe said voters without an ID, would be able to sign an affidavit in one of the work stations at the polls and provide supporting documents.

However, she doesn't expect for this change to cause longer wait times.

"Even before voter ID was law, most of the people voted with their driver's license instead of the voter registration card so I don't think is going to slow the process down. It's going to help the people who don't have ID to have another form instead of voting a provisional ballot or doing an additional step,” Van Wolfe said.

Wolfe, Duty and members of the Republican Party have been  working together to recruit workers at the polls, according to Duty. She said jobs for poll workers, poll watchers and student election clerks who must be over the age of 16 are available.

Duty added those working on Election Day will have training in October that would advise them of the changes. Both parties are also considering doing another session after.

“Everybody needs to be comfortable with the machines, they need to be comfortable questions that are going to be asked and now we have these whole set of questions on what you can bring in. I'm sure this training will be pretty thorough” Duty said.

She also said the Elections Commission she is a part of has been meeting to address voting irregularities in the primary election and make sure the system is working well for the upcoming election.

 Van Wolfe said those issues have been addressed to prevent them in November, including using all automated systems instead of doing anything manually.

Additional equipment will be added to the poll sites and a larger number of workers will be there for the high turnout expected. The Elections Administrator still advises voters to cast their ballot during early voting to avoid long lines. 

For information regarding voter registration, click here.

If you would like to be a poll worker, you can contact the Democratic Party, the Republican Party or the Elections Office.

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