County Judges, Election, Elected Officials Caught Misleading Voters Over COVID-19 Mail-In Voting

AUSTIN – Attorney General Ken Paxton on Friday, issued a letter to Texas county judges and election officials, providing guidance that, under the Texas Election Code §§ 82.001–.004., Texans may not claim disability based on fears of contracting COVID-19 and receive a ballot to vote by mail in upcoming elections.

Several county officials throughout the State, including the Harris County judge and clerk, are misleading the public about their ability to vote by mail, telling citizens that in light of COVID-19, anyone can claim a “disability” that makes them eligible for ballot by mail.
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Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra released the following tweet on April 29, 2020

 

Disability, as that term is used in the Texas Election Code’s provisions allowing voting by mail, must involve a “sickness or physical condition” that prevents a voter from voting in person on election day without a likelihood of needing personal assistance or of injuring the voter’s health.

A voter ill with COVID-19 and who meets those requirements may apply for a ballot by mail.

Fear of contracting COVID-19, however, is a normal emotional reaction to the current pandemic and does not amount to an actual disability that qualifies a voter to receive a ballot by mail.

“Mail ballots based on disability are specifically reserved for those who are legitimately ill and cannot vote in-person without assistance or jeopardizing their health. The integrity of our democratic election process must be maintained, and the law established by our Legislature must be followed consistently,” said Attorney General Paxton. “My office will continue to defend the integrity of Texas’s election laws.”

The lawsuit recently filed in Travis County District Court does not change or suspend the disability requirements required by the Texas Legislature. Pursuant to Texas law, the District Court’s order is stayed and has no effect during the ongoing appeal.

Read a copy of the letter here.

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6 Comments

  1. Your obvious anti-ballot by mail bias is showing…again.
    What are you afraid of? Too many people voting?
    Or, as I have heard lately, from Republicans: “Too many of the wrong people voting.”
    Instead of vilifying local officials who are trying to inject some justice, and sanity, into our upcoming election, by not making people choose between their right to vote, and their health.
    What is your goal here?

  2. Your obvious anti-ballot by mail bias is showing…again.
    Are you afraid of too many people voting?
    Or, as I have heard lately, from Republicans: “Too many of the wrong people voting.”
    Instead of vilifying local officials who are trying to inject some justice, and sanity, into our upcoming election, why not encourage government officials to help people not have to choose between their right to vote, and their health, by expanding Vote-By-Mail to all Texas citizens?

    1. Let's Vote By Telephone ....."Hello? Yeah, it's me, and I'm voting for my wife, too." says:

      Your obvious anti-ballot by telephone bias is showing…again, Ms. Simone.

      Are you afraid of too many people voting by phone?
      Or, as you have heard lately, from Democrats: “Too many of the wrong people voting.”

      “Hello, yes, of course it’s me. And I’ve got the ballots that were mailed to my family and they all want to vote for Dahlia Simone, so she can inject some justice, and sanity, into our upcoming election. Can you hear me now?”

  3. “Hello? You still there? Can you hear me?”

    Some fear that if too many of the ‘wrong kind of people’ vote, they will lose elections. I think they are correct, which is why we need expanded voter registration and participation, including the ability to vote by mail during this pandemic.

    No one should have to choose between exercising their right to vote and their health. And no country should be ruled by a minority of its citizens.

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