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State of Texas
Texas Attorney General's Office
News Release
Tuesday, December 05, 2017

AG Paxton Defends Texas’ Voter ID Law at 5th Circuit 

AUSTIN – Attorney General Ken Paxton today expressed confidence after lawyers from his office defended Texas’ voter ID law before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit in New Orleans.

“We appreciated the opportunity to inform the 5th Circuit that the Legislature passed Senate Bill 5 last session to comply with the changes that this court ordered to the original voter ID law, Senate Bill 14, from 2011,” Attorney General Paxton said. “Those who challenged the voter ID law cannot identify one person who faces a substantial burden to voting under the reasonable-impediment exception of the revised law. We’re hopeful the 5th Circuit will uphold Texas’ common-sense voter ID law.”

Senate Bill 5 allows registered voters without one of the seven state-approved forms of photo identification to cast an in-person ballot by signing a sworn declaration of reasonable impediment stating why they couldn’t obtain photo ID.

In September, a three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit stayed a lower court decision that blocked Texas from enforcing voter ID, ruling that the state could use its revised law for future elections. In a majority opinion, it concluded at the time that Texas made a strong showing that it is likely to prevail in the case. Previously, the U.S. Department of Justice said it was satisfied Senate Bill 5 “eradicates any discriminatory effect or intent” and expands voter identification options.

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