ANYONE who hopes to vote in Texas this year needs an approved form of government-issued photo ID. Concealed handgun licences count; student IDs do not. The state’s Republican lawmakers introduced this requirement in 2011, arguing that it would prevent fraud and ensure the integrity of elections. They passed it over the objections of Democrats, who maintained that voter-ID laws are merely a cynical way to suppress turnout—especially among African-Americans, Hispanics and poor people—and who have continued to fight the law in court on that basis.
The legal wrangling has thus far been inconclusive, and confusing. Texas was finally able to implement its voter-ID law in time for this year’s primaries, as a result of Shelby County v Holder, the Supreme Court decision in 2013 that Continue reading