AUSTIN, TEXAS—An attorney for a voting rights group said Monday that U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration said that the federal government no longer plans to challenge Texas’ strict voter ID law.
Danielle Lang, of the Washington-based Campaign Legal Center, said the Justice Department informed plaintiffs in the case that it will be filing documents to formally drop its opposition to the Texas law. She called the decision an “extraordinary disappointment.”
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“It’s a complete 360,” said Lang, the centre’s deputy director of voting rights. “We can’t make heads or tails of any factual reason for the change. There has been no new evidence that’s come to light.”
A federal appeals court last year ruled that the Texas law discriminated against minorities and the poor, and it ordered changes ahead of the November election.
The Justice Department joined Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton last week in seeking a delay in the case until summer. U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos, who is presiding over the case, turned down the request.
The Texas law requires voters to show one of seven approved forms of identification to cast a ballot. It was softened in August to allow people without a driver’s license or other photo ID to sign an affidavit declaring that they have an impediment to obtaining required identification.
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