Officials are conducting their first election under SB 1
, a sweeping overhaul that, among other provisions, restricts the hours that counties can offer early voting and bans election officials from sending unsolicited mail-in voting applications.
The voting changes were signed into law in September, leaving officials less than six months to familiarize themselves and voters with the changes in time for the March 1 primary. Issues, from the rejection of mail-in ballot applications to a temporary voter registration card shortage, have since cropped up ahead of early voting starting on February 14 and a February 18 mail-in ballot application deadline.
“Unfortunately, we had a Republican legislature so determined to make it harder to vote that there just was not any thought given to implementation,” said Anthony Gutierrez, executive director of Common Cause Texas. “At every level, this is just a mess.” …
Common Cause Texas, like other local groups, has set up a hotline and is calling on voters to educate themselves on the new law. Gutierrez said advocates are also suggesting voters include both ID numbers on their application to ensure they aren’t rejected.