Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Texas Married Women Can't Vote Act

At least those married women who changed their names. And transgender people. And people with awkward first names they don't use of their driver's licenses.
h Townes on October 17, 2013 at 9:20 am
In addition to attacks on their reproductive rights, women in Texas are facing another sizable problem: large-scale disenfranchisement. Thanks to the state’s strict voter ID law – going into effect on November 5 – constituents must now provide a photo ID with their most up-to-date, legally-recognized name at the polls. On the surface the prerequisite appears achievable, but in reality it disproportionately impacts female voters, specifically those who are married.
According to the Brennan Center for Justice, “66 percent of voting-age women with ready access to any proof of citizenship have a document with [their] current legal name” – the remainder must find a way to procure a new photo ID to vote in upcoming elections. Because so many women fail to update their IDs after adopting their spouses’ last name, their right to vote is under threat. Doing so, however, comes with a litany of obstacles.
Constituents must show original documents verifying legal proof of a name change, whether it is a marriage license, divorce decree, or court ordered change – they are prevented from using photocopies. In the absence of original documents, voters must pay a minimum of $20 to receive new copies. Due to inflexible work schedules and travel expenses, voters often opt to have their documents mailed, incurring additional costs.
Goes to show you: don't mess with Texas Republicans as they protect their state against massively non-existent voter fraud. Also, adverse electoral outcomes.

(By the way, current Tex guv Rick Perry is actually James Richard Perry. I wonder how he has appeared on the ballot over the years. Ditto for Rafael Edward (Ted) Cruz.)

h/t Feminist Philosophers

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