WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Monday, another lawsuit was filed challenging Texas’ newly-enacted voter suppression law Senate Bill 1. The complaint, filed on behalf of Mi Familia Vota and three voters, argues that S.B. 1 poses an undue burden on the right to vote in violation of the First and 14th Amendments, purposely intends to limit minority voters’ access to the ballot box in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) and disproportionately impacts voters with disabilities and limited language proficiencies in violation of Section 208 of the VRA. The suit asks the court to prohibit the suppressive provisions from being enforced. This is the sixth lawsuit filed against the law and the fifth to be filed in federal court.
The lawsuit challenges multiple provisions of S.B. 1 that the plaintiffs allege burden Texan voters, including: a ban on mobile early voting locations and drive thru voting; prohibiting the automatic sending of mail-in ballot applications to eligible voters; additional ID and signature requirements for mail-in ballots; requirements for monthly purges of voter rolls; new obstacles for voters to receive assistance to vote absentee or in person; and the empowerment of partisan poll watchers, largely at the expense of voters of color who have historically faced intimidation at the polls. The complaint argues that S.B. 1 “is a calculated effort to disenfranchise voters” and particularly seeks to turn the tide of growing minority participation in the state’s voting process by targeting “voting methods that Latino, Black, and other voters of color used in record numbers in the most recent election.”