Texas GOP Challenges Curbside, Drive-Thru Voting in Lawsuit

With an election official looking on an elderly voter uses the drive-thru option to vote o
AP Photo/LM Otero

The Texas GOP filed a lawsuit Monday night against Harris County for allowing more voting options during the coronavirus pandemic.

The lawsuit, filed in a Texas appeals court in Houston hours before early voting began in the state, argued that Harris County had violated state election codes by allowing drive-thru and curbside voting.

“This illegal policy, which is grounded on the dubious notion that a lack of immunity from COVID-19 justifies a wholesale repudiation of the Texas Election Code, has already been expressly rejected by the Texas Supreme Court,” the suit reads.

The lawsuit seeks to ban drive-in voting and limit curbside voting to those who have sent sworn applications proving they qualify for it.

State election law has allowed Texans with medical conditions to vote curbside, where a poll worker brings a ballot outside to the voter, who remains seated in their car.

Harris County opened on Tuesday ten drive-thru locations, in which voters are handed a voting machine through their car window to place their ballots.

Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins told the Texas Tribune the lawsuit is a way for the Texas GOP to limit the people’s right to vote.

“This lawsuit is not only frivolous, but it’s also a gross misrepresentation of the differences between curbside voting — for voters with disabilities, including illness — and drive-thru voting, which is available for all voters who want to vote from the safety and convenience of their vehicle,” he said.

Texas has some of the strictest voting laws in the country and is one of the few states that did not relax mail-in ballot requirements for people otherwise ineligible for an absentee ballot.

Last week, the Texas Supreme Court ruled that the heavily Democratic Harris County could not send out mail-in ballots to 2.4 million registered voters.


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