Civil Rights Organizations File Brief in Support of Harris County Vote-by-Mail Application Efforts
HOUSTON – Representing the League of Women Voters of Texas, the ACLU of Texas and the Texas Civil Rights Project filed a court brief supporting the Harris County Clerk’s decision to send vote-by-mail applications to every registered voter in Harris County, which is being challenged by the Texas Attorney General.
In the brief, the organizations argue that sending out applications to vote by mail with instructions explaining who is eligible will educate and empower voters, especially those who do not have immediate or consistent access to online resources.
“The Harris County Clerk’s Office is doing its part to ensure that voters are educated and their rights are protected during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Anjali Salvador, staff attorney for the ACLU of Texas. “We hope the court will turn away the Texas Attorney General’s baseless attempt to squash Harris County’s voter education efforts.”
“In these confusing and unprecedented times, Texans need more information around ballot applications and mail-in ballots, not less,” said Grace Chimene, president of the League of Women Voters of Texas. “The League spends a large portion of its time educating voters about their options each cycle; providing accurate and updated information on how to vote safely and effectively, especially during this pandemic, is critical and should not be underestimated.”
“Harris County residents have enough to worry about besides their right to vote becoming political theater for the Attorney General,” said Joaquin Gonzalez, staff attorney with the Texas Civil Rights Project. “Educating eligible voters about the process to get a vote-by-mail ballot is a basic function of the Clerk’s office. If state politicians are not going to lead in a way that empowers voters, then they should step aside to let local officials prepare for the election.”
The amicus brief was filed with the Harris County 127th District Court, which will be hearing arguments in Texas v. Hollins, in which the state of Texas is attempting to stop the Harris County Clerk’s office from sending out vote-by-mail applications to each registered voter in the county.
A copy of the brief can be found here: https://www.aclutx.org/sites/default/files/2020-09-08_texas_v._hollins_amicus_brief_redacted.pdf
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