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Posts Tagged ‘drivers licenses’

Voter ID may have had broader effects than we thought

Interesting. Texas’ strict voter identification requirements kept many would-be voters in a Hispanic-majority congressional district from going to the polls last November — including many who had proper IDs — a new survey shows. And the state’s voter ID law – coupled with lackluster voter education efforts – might have shaped the outcome of a […]

SOS to review motor voter complaints

I hope this amounts to more than lip service. The Texas Secretary of State has agreed to study why thousands of Texans have complained over the past year and a half that they had problems registering to vote despite a federal law that requires all states to offer voter registration in offices where citizens apply […]

There’s still time for bad bills to be passed

Bad bill #1: After four hours of debate and more than a dozen failed amendments offered by Democrats, the Senate on Monday gave preliminary approval to far-reaching restrictions on minors seeking abortions in Texas without parental consent. On a 21-10 vote, the upper chamber signed off on House Bill 3994 by Republican state Rep. Geanie […]

Senate belatedly addresses one voter ID concern

Better really late and at least mildly coerced than never, I guess. The Texas Senate, with scant attention during an early morning vote, gave its unanimous answer to a lingering question the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals posed about the state’s embattled voter ID law. Among the first votes taken by the chamber on […]

Bill filing deadline has passed

Believe it or not, we are almost halfway through the legislative session, and we have now passed the point where new bills can be filed. Racing to beat a deadline for filing bills, state lawmakers on Friday submitted hundreds of measures on everything from abolishing the death penalty to the licensing of auctioneers. By the […]

A better way to cut taxes

Grits has a suggestion for the Legislature. Reduce local jail costs – which have been a big driver of tax increases in many Texas counties – by reducing penalty categories for low-level marijuana possession (currently a Class B misdemeanor for possession of two ounces or less) and driving with an invalid license (DWLI, currently a […]

The privilege of voting

It’s not a right if you aren’t allowed to do it. A day before Texans go to the polls, an unusual group gathered for lunch at a Mexican restaurant not far from downtown: an unemployed African-American grandmother; a University of Houston student originally from Pennsylvania; a pregnant mother who had recently moved back to the […]

What they didn’t tell us about voter ID

Republicans knew fully well that their voter ID bill would disenfranchise a lot of people. They just didn’t care. Republican state officials working to pass a voter photo ID law in 2011 knew that more than 500,000 of the state’s registered voters did not have the credentials needed to cast ballots under the new requirement. […]

It shouldn’t be this hard to get a driver’s license

And for most people it isn’t that hard. But for some people, it is. Daniela Parker has two mothers, a circumstance that turned a typically routine matter – scheduling a road test for a Texas driver’s license – into a lengthy hassle. Parker, Mayor Annise Parker’s daughter, was turned away from taking the road test […]

Texas woman denied driver’s license over same-sex marriage

That’s the headline of this Observer story, and it’s just as infuriating as you think it is. A woman who recently relocated from California says the Texas Department of Public Safety refused to issue her an accurate driver’s license because her last name was changed through a same-sex marriage. After Connie Wilson married her partner […]

Once again, voter fraud by impersonation just doesn’t exist

From the Washington Post: Election fraud happens. But ID laws are not aimed at the fraud you’ll actually hear about. Most current ID laws (Wisconsin is a rare exception) aren’t designed to stop fraud with absentee ballots (indeed, laws requiring ID at the polls push more people into the absentee system, where there are plenty […]

Students against voter ID

A new front is opened in the fight against voter ID. Civil rights groups have spent a decade fighting requirements that voters show photo identification, arguing that this discriminates against African-Americans, Hispanics and the poor. This week in a North Carolina courtroom, another group will make its case that such laws are discriminatory: college students. […]

Saturday mini-link roundup

Three stories you should read that I didn’t have time to devote a full post to: AusChron: Abbott’s abject CPRIT failures The scandal broke after letters between the agency’s chief science officer, Nobel laureate Dr. Alfred Gilman, and CPRIT’s Chief Commercialization Officer Jerry Cobbs were released, in which Gilman repeatedly questioned the ethics of multiple […]

We still have no idea what the effect of the voter ID law will be

From the inbox, Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart declares victory for voter ID. The final results of the 2014 Democratic and Republican March 4th Primary Elections have been approved by the Democratic and Republican Parties. The results show that less than 0.01% of the voters did not present one of the forms of photo identification […]

Another lawsuit filed against the voter ID law

The Observer reports. Election Day last week brought plenty of complaints at the polls about Texas’ new voter ID law, but it also brought one major complaint in Corpus Christi federal court, where nine voters joined La Unión Del Pueblo Entero in suing the state over its tough new voting requirements. The plaintiffs are long-time voters […]

It’s about the people who don’t have ID

We’ve had plenty of blue-sky stories telling us that the voter ID law has been no big deal. A few provisional ballots and some number of affidavits, sure, but everyone who’s wanted to vote has been able to vote, right? Sure, as long as they had one of the accepted forms of ID. But what […]

Affidavits everywhere

Dallas County. At least one out of every seven early voters in Dallas County has had to sign an affidavit verifying his or her identity as part of Texas’ new voter ID law. Though no one in Dallas County has been prevented from voting — or even forced to cast a provisional ballot — because […]

The problem with voter ID is more than just name matching

Cindy George is correct about what isn’t a problem with voter ID. The names on your voter registration card and your ID must match. For the most part. They will be considered the same if they’re “substantially similar.” There have been rumblings that married women might run into problems at the polls and be asked […]

Where are all the teenage drivers?

There’s a lot less of them than there used to be. Between 2001 and 2010, Texas added only 2,578 drivers age 16 to 21 while the age group grew by more than 238,000 statewide, dropping the percentage with a license from 62.4 percent to 55.9 percent. Young adults who drive are doing so less often, […]

Drivers licenses for all – maybe

Not quite drivers licenses, exactly, but close enough. A Dallas Democrat has teamed up with two powerful Republicans to craft a compromise version of a bill that would give immigrants here illegally the ability to drive legally in Texas and obtain insurance – but only after they submit to a criminal background check, fingerprinting and […]

Voter ID and the Driver Responsibility Program

Grits returns to a question he has asked before. The Dallas News last week (March 24) published a feature behind the paywall by reporter Terrence Stutz titled “Texas lawmakers want brakes put on driver surcharges for road violations,” as well as an editorial on the public part of their site calling for the repeal of […]

Poli Sci profs against voter ID

Rice political science professor Mark Jones writes an op-ed in the Chron that does a thorough job of dissecting Texas’ contentious voter ID law. Nearly one out of every three Texas counties lacks an operational DPS office, and no office is open after 6 p.m. or on weekends. DPS offices in the largest urban counties […]

Why no ID?

Grits asks an interesting question. Why do so many adult Texans lack ID? In part because 2 million drivers have had their drivers licenses revoked because of nonpayment of the Driver Responsibility Surcharge, which readers will recall is a stiff civil penalty tacked on top of any fines, punishments or court costs stemming from certain […]

Why do we make it so hard to vote?

News item: Many voter registrations around the country are outdated or incorrect. Some 24 million voter registrations in the United States contain significant errors, including about 1.8 million dead people still on the rolls and many more approved to vote in multiple states, according to a report released Tuesday. Even though the inaccuracies impact one […]

News flash: Voter ID will mean fewer people can vote

I know, I’m as shocked as you are. As many as a quarter of voters in some small Texas counties might not be able to cast ballots if the federal government allows the new state voter ID law to go into effect. And in some places, the potential for that decrease in the number of […]

Justice Department urged to block voter ID law

I’m all in on this. A coalition of civil rights groups is urging the Obama administration’s Justice Department to reject Texas’ voter-ID law, charging that the measure advocated by Rick Perry intentionally discriminates against black and Hispanic voters. The Legislature passed the law earlier this year requiring voters to present a picture identification. The Justice […]

DPS Megacenters

Not sure what I think about this. With a $63 million infusion from the Legislature, state officials hope to cut the legendary long lines and irritating red tape at driver’s license centers across Texas with upgraded technology and new “megacenters” in Austin and three other metro areas. Texas Department of Public Safety officials on Tuesday […]

DPS loses lawsuit over drivers license rules

This happened the week before last, but I’m not sure it will matter at this point. On [July 29], Judge Orlinda Naranjo ruled against the Texas Department of Public Safety and said that the agency could no longer require those here on temporary visas to prove they are in the country legally in order to […]

The consolation prize

The Republicans couldn’t get their act together enough to pass the “sanctuary cities” bill, but they did manage to do this. A provision in the approved Senate Bill 1, the special session’s must-pass school finance bill, will require people to prove U.S. citizenship or legal residence before they can renew or get a Texas driver’s […]

Voter ID 2011

The debate is going on in the Senate today over voter ID – it will be taken up by the House later, after committee hearings that are sure to be a freak show. You can follow the ins and outs at places like the Chron’s Texas Politics blog and the Statesman’s Postcards from the Lege; […]

Driver records available online

You know how you need to mail a request to get a copy of your driver’s record when you request to take a defensive driving course to get a ticket dismissed? Now you can save yourself a stamp and order it online. “We are pleased to offer this new service, which is available 24/7 to […]

Man the barricades!

Wayne Slater, on the just-ended state Republican convention in Dallas: For a party in power, there seem to be a lot of martyrs in the Texas GOP. Rush Limbaugh says Democrats are the party of victims. But it was the Republicans at their state convention in Dallas this weekend who clearly saw themselves as the […]

Our teen drivers are better than yours

Good news is always welcome. A new report by the Texas Transportation Institute found that the state’s rate of fatal teen crashes is dropping faster here than anywhere. Researchers looked at 37 states that put restrictions on teen drivers’ licenses and found Texas is alone in seeing the number of teen drivers involved in fatal […]

Where’d that driver’s license data come from?

The Lone Star Project revisits the matter of Ed Johnson and Dwayne Bohac and their cozy relationship as business partners with a real in at the Harris County Tax Assessor’s office. Last month, the Lone Star Project revealed that Harris County Associate Voter Registrar, Ed Johnson, is a paid employee of a GOP political consulting […]