Bravo to U.S. District Judge Fred Biery of San Antonio on achieving a temporary halt to the Texas “voter fraud” purge! Biery called the purge “a solution looking for a problem.”

“[...] perfectly legal naturalized Americans were burdened with what the Court finds to be ham-handed and threatening correspondence from the state which did not politely ask for information but rather exemplifies the power of government to strike fear and anxiety and to intimidate the least powerful among us,” Biery wrote.

Brazos County has a list of 570 names that have been “flagged” as potential non-citizens. According to the Elections Administrator Trudy Hancock, 47 of those individuals received the initial letter questioning their citizenship, followed by a “disregard” letter. The rest of the people on this list likely don’t even know they are on it.

The Texas voter fraud list is comprised of people who initially used a green card or similar documentation at DPS when obtaining their drivers license or state ID, indicating that they were not a citizen at the time. Anyone who used such documentation as far back as 1996 could be included on the list, even if they have since become a naturalized citizen.

And since we naturalize thousands of citizens every year, that situation is very likely.

Civil rights groups argue that the list constitutes voter intimidation targeting Latinx and immigrant communities, and we at YoungDemsBCS agree. We will be watching to ensure that voting rights aren’t stripped from these communities who are already targeted in the Trump era.

Meanwhile, Secretary of State David Whitley’s chances of getting confirmed in the TX Senate aren’t looking great. He needs a 2/3rds vote to be confirmed but all Texas Democrats have pledged to vote “no,” which would be enough to reject his confirmation.

Note: the battle isn’t over! Counties haven’t thrown out these “fraud” lists entirely and still seem to be going through them. But these are good developments! We have activist groups such as Jolt Texas, Texas Civil Rights Project, LULAC, and others to thank for the progress we’ve made so far.

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