Greg Abbott’s most recent choice for Texas Secretary of State, David Whitley, put out a list of 95,000 Texas voters which it claimed were not U.S. citizens. Upon even slight investigation, the phony list – obviously intended to pump up Abbott’s Tea Party bona fides – began to quickly fall apart. In announcing the list, Whitley and indicted Attorney General Ken Paxton claimed that the list was put out as part of a fight against fraudulent voting. Individual 1 a/k/a Trumph – the Insult Comic President and other denizens of the far right have insisted that illegal voting and voter fraud are serious problems despite the lack of any real evidence of in-person voter fraud and the Texas GOP is obviously eager to back him up.
It turns out that many names on the list were of people who registered when getting a Texas Driver’s License – a process that requires applicants to establish their citizenship – or registered at a naturalization ceremony – which should need no explanation, that is to anyone other than Our Poor Idiot Governor. When that was revealed, the list quickly started falling apart. In Harris County, almost 60% of the names on a 30,000 voter list were almost immediately removed. Odds are that the vast majority of the remaining names will turn up nothing as well.
To their credit, most of the local county tax-assessor collectors (still in charge of registering voters as a legacy of the Jim Crow era poll taxes) have tread very carefully and seem intent on protecting the rights of Texas voters – unlike OPIG and his flunkies.
So OPIG has spent a lot of taxpayer money and effort in a process which might reveal that a handful of Texas voters were not actually authorized to vote. If the Texas GOP clearly stands for one thing – it stands for voter suppression.