Supreme Court Declines to Force Texas Officials to Expand Mail-In Voting
WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court on Friday evening decline to force Texas officials to offer mail-in ballots to all voters in the state because of the threat posed by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The court’s order is the latest development in a weeks-long battle between Texas Democrats and state Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, over voting during the pandemic.
The Democrats argue that people shouldn’t have to choose between their right to vote and their health. Paxton maintains that expanding access to vote-by-mail could lead to voter fraud.
State regulations allow vote by mail to those who are 65 and older, voters who have a sickness or physical condition from appearing at the polls, and others who are absent from the county.
In May, a district court held that in light of the pandemic, all voters in Texas could take part in no-excuse vote by mail. The judge issued a preliminary injunction blocking the provision. But then on June 4, a federal appeals court blocked that ruling, pending appeal.
Hoping the justices would reinstate the district judge’s order, the Texas Democrats submitted a request to vacate the stay to Justice Samuel Alito, Jr., who oversees emergency requests from that region of the country.
As is their custom, the justices did not explain their rationale for not hearing the case, but Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote that she thought the application raised “weighty but seemingly novel questions” regarding the 26th amendment that she hoped a court of appeals would consider “well in advance” of the November election.
In a statement Friday night, Paxton said, “I applaud the Supreme Court for following the law and refusing to order mail-in balloting that the Texas Legislature has forbidden.”
“Universal mail-in ballots, which are notoriously vulnerable to fraud, would only lead to greater election fraud and disenfranchise lawful voters,” Paxton said. “State election officials have many options available to safely and securely hold elections without risking widespread fraud. My office will continue to fight for safe, free and fair elections.”
In The News
WASHINGTON - As a select committee prepares to open its investigation Tuesday into the events leading up to and during the Jan. 6 insurrection on Capitol Hill, a trio of House Republican wonder what might have been. Everyone expected some controversy when House Minority Leader Kevin... Read More
Electric utility company FirstEnergy Corp. agreed to settle a Justice Department complaint Thursday by paying $230 million to avoid a federal wire fraud conspiracy charge. Company officials admitted they conspired with former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder to pay millions of dollars to his political nonprofit... Read More
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Democrat Abby Finkenauer, a former congresswoman, is running for Republican Chuck Grassley's U.S. Senate seat, hoping her blue-collar credentials will propel her forward in a state that has grown more conservative over the years. The 32-year-old former state lawmaker, who announced... Read More
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court should overturn its landmark 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide and let states decide whether to regulate abortion before a fetus can survive outside the womb, the office of Mississippi's Republican attorney general argued in papers filed Thursday... Read More
WASHINGTON (AP) — Unfazed by Republican threats of a boycott, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi declared that a congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection will take on its "deadly serious" work whether Republicans participate or not. The Republicans' House leader, Kevin McCarthy, called the committee... Read More
LOS ANGELES- California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation on Wednesday investing $330 million to expand the state’s Film and Television Tax Credit Program in order to boost the state’s economy. Launched in 2009, the Film and Television Tax Credit Program works to attract and retain production... Read More