Home » USA » Voting made easier for concealed handgun owners in Texas

Voting made easier for concealed handgun owners in Texas

Rick Perry also goes jogging with a laser sight-equipped pistol (Photo: Rodger Mallison/AP)

In an Oct. 7 article for Bloomberg, Jonathan Alter mentions that Texas Governor and Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry “recently signed a bill saying you can vote with a concealed-handgun permit but not with identification from the University of Texas”.

Indeed, the website of the Texas Legislature confirms that, as per Senate Bill 14 of 2011, the following serves as valid voter identification:

a license to carry a concealed handgun issued to the person by the Department of Public Safety that has not expired or that expired no earlier than 60 days before the date of presentation

In the text of the bill, a line has been drawn through invalid voter identification such as:

birth certificate or other document confirming birth that is admissible in a court of law and establishes the person’s identity

Other crossed-out text includes

form of identification containing the person’s photograph that establishes the person’s identity

which has curiously been replaced with

United States military identification card that contains the person’s photograph that has not expired or that expired no earlier than 60 days before the date of presentation

As for what such maneuvers mean for US democracy, Alter notes:

The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University just released a disturbing report showing that changes in state laws could make it much harder for more than 5 million eligible voters to cast ballots in 2012. Some states are putting barriers in the way of early voting and student voting, both of which are used heavily by the liberal base.

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3 Comments

  1. Pat says:

    This has to be changed. Voting should be encouraged as a right, and many have a point that it might be required with a penalty for failure to vote (as in many countries). These ongoing maneuvers to block voting should be prosecuted and abolished forever.

  2. snetterv says:

    I agree…what are we coming to as a nation when we place such restrictions on the rights of voters! Our young adults are comprised of more democrats than repulicans and all of the sudden we are going to change the rules. The bad thing is that these americans are going to show up to vote and be told that they can’t, not realizing there has been a change! This is just horrible!!!!

  3. JJ Garcia says:

    An important historical perspective on this is that fundamentally the Voting Rights Act has not been sufficiently implemented. Throughout the country you have federal court decisions that implemented the Voting Rights Act where historically implementation nationally was something the power structure could not allow. Now in the past few weeks we have seen that Holder is now, and just recently deeming many state laws in violation of the Voting Rights Act. This is no coincidence! With a Black man as President and a Black man as Attorney General with expertise in constitutional law. We see a form of historical blowback. In an effort to uphold the letter of the law, Whether it be the Voting Rights Act, mass deportations, and “End of the Iraq War”, etc,. Obama and Holder are in a sort of historical quagmire, “damn if you do, and damned if you don’t”. This will surely get interesting! “Contradiction and Overdetermination,” anyone, anyone?

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