Judges Discover Republican Voter Suppression Bill Rushed Through Texas Legislature

Victoria Rose Rodriguez, 18, told a federal court in Washington that she had limited documentation — a birth certificate, a high school transcript and a student ID card with a photo on it — but is currently a registered voter in Texas. She said her parents are too busy to take her or her twin sister to get the new voter identification cards required by the law.

Getting a driver’s license also is not an option, she said, because it would mean she and her sister would be added to her family’s car insurance, a costly move.

“My dad works all day,” she said. “And my mother is the sole caretaker for my grandmother.”

Rodriguez’s testimony came at the end of the second day of a trial to determine whether Texas’ new voter ID law violates the federal Voting Rights Act. A three-judge panel is hearing the case after the state of Texas sued the Justice Department, which blocked the law under the Act in March.

… Tuesday, the Justice Department presented witnesses who testified that the law was passed in haste. Texas state Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer said the voter ID bill was rushed through the Legislature and passed over the objections of minority lawmakers.

“There was a determined effort to pass this bill in record time,” Martinez Fischer testified.

The six-term state representative, who’s chairman of the Mexican American Legislative Caucus, testified along with other Justice Department witnesses even though Texas has not called all its witnesses. Because of travel schedules, witnesses for the opposing sides are being called out of order and Texas will continue making its case Wednesday.

Martinez Fischer said he and his colleagues tried repeatedly to block or slow down the voter ID bill. He said it was difficult to determine why the legislation was on a fast track.

“The rationale was constantly changing,” he said. “One of the comments was this was ‘a solution in search of a problem.'”

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