Texas Supreme Court denies Republican bid to throw away 127,000 votes

Washington, Nov 1 (efe-epa).- The Texas Supreme Court on Sunday rejected a petition by the Republicans that sought to invalidate some 127,000 votes cast in advance by drive-through voters days before the Nov. 3 Election Day.

The petition, filed last week, argued that the drive-through voting system set up by the authorities in Harris County in the second-largest state of the United States to facilitate more participation of people violated federal voting law.

The plaintiffs, an activist and three Republican candidates for elected office in the state, said it was as if it were self-service restaurants.

The authorities used the system in at least 10 vote-collection points since early voting began in Texas on Oct 13.

The authorities granted the exception in Harris County because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The petitioners argued that it violated the US constitution by expanding a system that should be limited to voters with disabilities.

Voters can stop their vehicles by the curbside polling place. After poll workers confirm their identity, they are handed an electronic tablet by the window to cast their votes.

Election laws in Texas allow onsite curbside ballots to voters who are “physically unable to enter the polling place without personal assistance or likelihood of injuring the voter’s health.”

The decision of the Texas Supreme Court, whose members are all Republicans, was carried out without the magistrates issuing an argument for their ruling.

Texas Supreme justices had rejected a similar impeachment petition last month.

The Republicans have filed a similar request in a federal court that has not ruled as of now with just two days until the election day.

The rejection of these votes would affect about 10 percent of all those cast in early voting in Harris County, according to estimates by the local newspaper The Texas Tribune.

Texas has traditionally been a Republican bastion. But recent polls have suggested that there is a close race between President Donald Trump and his rival and Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

The state has already polled more than 9 million ballots, eclipsing its total turnout in the 2016 presidential election.

The Republicans have blocked voting by mail or other procedures in several states after Trump, who is seeking reelection, questioned the legality of the votes. EFE-EPA


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