Trump DOJ: Court Should Give Up Jurisdiction and Trust Texas on Voter ID Education Efforts

Texas dragged its feet in implementing the district court’s interim remedy in the Texas voter id case, which allowed voters without one of the right (narrow) forms of identification to vote in Texas elections. The state was so bad at letting voters know of the court’s interim remedy that plaintiffs had to go back to the district court to get Texas to devote some resources to educating voters.

Texas has now passed a new voter ID law (SB 5), which contains no requirement to educate voters about its reasonable impediment provisions (which largely, but don’t completely, follow the district court’s interim remedy).  Texas says the district court should nonetheless give up jurisdiction over the case and not supervise how SB5 is implemented, and now the Trump DOJ has fully embraced Texas’s view on this issue (after the Obama DOJ was one of the party’s suing Texas over its voter id law).

From a new brief by the DOJ:

First, Private Plaintiffs point to the fact that S.B. 5 does not codify any provision “for education and training.” ECF No. 1051 at 14. But the State has made a public commitment to implement a voter education and training program that exceeds the program required by the agreed interim remedy. See id.; see also ECF No. 1052 at 7–9. There is no requirement that the State’s voter education and training program be memorialized in statute. Moreover, in all events, any concerns regarding the State’s completion of its voter education and training efforts provide no occasion to “substitut[e]” a permanent injunction or declaratory judgment for S.B. 5.

“A public commitment.”  Remarkable.

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