Texas has strict rules about who can vote by mail. Voters must be 65-years-old or older, disabled, out of town when polls are open, or incarcerated. That’s it. To receive a mail-in ballot, Texans must apply.
In an effort to increase voter turnout by increasing the number of mail-in ballots, Harris County election officials decided to send unsolicited mail-in ballot applications to voters in the county. Harris County includes Houston and is the third-largest county in the country. It’s also majority-Democrat.
There’s only one problem. State law doesn’t allow for such an effort, so state officials, who are majority Republican, sued the county election officials. The Texas Supreme Court, also majority-Republican, just ruled against the county election officials.
This is just one of many fights happening in Texas over voting.
As for the voters in Harris County, officials expect nearly 200,000 mail-in votes this year, about twice what they get during a normal presidential election.