“The Republicans have tried every tactic in the book to suppress votes. They are just changing the rules, which is going to confuse people,” a lawyer at LULAC said.
On Oct. 3, the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) filed a lawsuit against Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for ordering the removal of all but one drop-off location per county statewide for mail-in ballots. The matter is of concern, according to the lawsuit, because early voting in Texas has already begun.
“They’ve been telling people for months to go vote early, and now people are showing up there, and there’s no ballot box,” said Luis Roberto Vera, Jr., general counsel at LULAC, in an interview with The Americano.
The lawsuit comes two days after Gov. Abbott issued a proclamation enhancing ballot security protocols for the upcoming 2020 presidential election. However, LULAC and the Texas Alliance for Retired Americans, which also filed a lawsuit against Gov. Abbott, allege that these new regulations are a way to suppress votes. The groups claim Gov. Abbott is attempting to confuse voters by issuing last-minute voting changes. Gov. Abbott, however, alleges the proclamation will ensure voter security.
“The State of Texas has a duty to voters to maintain the integrity of our elections,” Gov. Abbott said in a statement. “As we work to preserve Texans’ ability to vote during the COVID-19 pandemic, we must take extra care to strengthen ballot security protocols throughout the state. These enhanced security protocols will ensure greater transparency and will help stop attempts at illegal voting.”
Vera called the proclamation by the governor hypocritical and noted that there are several lawsuits across the nation against Republican governors who are attempting to suppress Democratic voters.
“The Republicans have never been able to prove voter fraud,” Vera said. “They offer no evidence.”
In Harris County, where more than 40% of its population is Latino, and almost 20% are Black, 2.4 million voters there will have to drive for miles to drop off their ballots now that 12 drop-off locations have been closed. Voters in Harris County now only have a single location (NRG Arena, Hall D, NRG Pkwy, Houston, Texas 77054).
“It is disgraceful, unlawful, and the worst type of third world politics or something that you would expect in a country like Russia or China, not Texas or the United States,” Domingo García, LULAC national president said in a statement.
Vera added people should continue with their voting plan and vote as early as possible.