的 德州 Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld Gov. Greg Abbott‘s order limiting the number of ballot drop box locations to one per county, a policy that will mostly affect the state’s largest – and more heavily Democratic – counties.
“The governor’s October proclamation provides Texas voters more ways to vote in the Nov. 3 election than does the election code,” the all-Republican court wrote in its 17-page ruling. “It does not disenfranchise anyone.”
The order faced three legal challenges from civil rights groups and Democrats alleging that it exceeds Abbott’s authority and “imposes an unconstitutional right on voters’ right to vote,” particularly in geographically large areas.
But the Texas Supreme Court disagreed, arguing that voters have other ways to cast their ballot without relying on the drop-off boxes.
“The plaintiffs complain that limiting early hand deliveries of mail-in ballots to one office per county requires more travel time for some voters. But this ignores the other options for casting their ballots that these voters have,” the opinion said. The court noted that Texans can vote early for an expanded period; drop off their mail-in ballot in a 40-day window before the election rather than just on Nov. 3; and mail in their ballots.
Tuesday’s ruling, which overturned a lower court’s decision to issue an injunction on Abbott’s order, is expected to be the final outcome in the matter. A state appeals court reinstated the order two weeks ago, siding with Abbott in the ruling.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton applauded the court’s decision, saying it had “stopped the district court’s unlawful injunction and preserved election integrity.”
“的 2020 general election is already underway and the integrity of our election process must be protected and preserved,” Paxton said. “政府. Abbott’s order rightfully bolsters the security of dropped-off ballots. The Texas Supreme Court correctly stopped the district court’s unlawful injunction and preserved election integrity.”
Texas allows voters to cast an absentee ballot if they are over the age of 65, have an illness or disability, will be out of the country for early voting or Election Day, or are in jail but otherwise eligible to vote.
多于 7.8 million Texans have already cast their vote in this election, the second-highest in the nation, according to the University of Florida’s Elections Project database. 代表的不只是 86% 近 9 在 2016 总统选举.