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Texas bill: A step towards better voter ID education, greater transparency
04/24/17 |
Publication Date: 
Monday, April 24, 2017 - 12:00

The state has a responsibility to educate the public about voter identification requirements under SB 14, the voter ID law passed by the Texas Legislature in 2011. In July 2016, the state was also ordered by a federal court to engage in a $2.5 million voter ID education campaign as part of an interim remedy agreement. Despite evidence that the 2016 voter ID education campaign was not entirely successful, the state has not been forthcoming with details about the plan.

HB 3328 seeks to increase government transparency in the interest of improving voter ID education efforts by making information related to public spending on voter ID education public information subject to disclosure under the Public Information Act. The exceptions described in Sections 552.101 and 552.103 of the Government Code would no longer apply to such information.

Recent rulings that Texas' voting laws discriminate put pressure on the state, but the road ahead is long
04/24/17 |
Publication Date: 
Monday, April 24, 2017 - 01:00

Lawmakers are trying to pass a bill to address the discriminatory issues found with the voter ID law. But Democrats say it falls short of meeting the standards that a district court set last year.

Plaintiffs want District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos of Corpus Christi to consider throwing out the law after the legislative session and returning the state to the federal government's "pre-clearance" list.

But even if that happened, the Texas attorney general's office would almost certainly challenge the decision in the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. ...

The parties in the [redistricting] case are set to meet in San Antonio on Thursday. The three-judge panel will hear updates on whether a trial is needed and what a timeline for the rest of the case might look like.

But the panel has moved slowly and methodically throughout the case for over six years. It is unlikely to grant the plaintiffs' requests — for new congressional maps for the 2018 elections and federal oversight — before tackling other remaining issues, such as whether the 2013 interim maps were also discriminatory.

And even if the court sided with the plaintiffs in a trial and struck down the maps, Texas could appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court — dragging out the case even longer.

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Arizona Election Info

Upcoming Elections in Your State

2016 General Election: November 8, 2016

Voter Registration Deadline: October 10, 2016

For more information, visit the Arizona Secretary of State’s website.

Election Day:

The polls will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Mountain Time on Election Day.

Arizona offers early voting. The absentee ballot request must be received by the voter’s County Recorder’s office by 5:00 p.m. 11 days before the election. Information on how to request an early ballot or permanent early ballot status can be found on the Arizona Secretary of State’s website. For the 2016 election, early voting begins October 12, 2016 and all ballots must be received no later than 7:00 p.m. on Election Day. Counties may offer on-site early voting at the County Recorder’s office and other sites in the county.

How to Find Your Polling Place: Visit the Arizona Secretary of State’s website.


Already registered? Verify your voter registration status.

Registration Deadlines:

Voters must apply to register to vote 29 calendar days before the election in which they intend to vote. For the 2016 Presidential Election, the deadline is October 10.

How to Check Your Registration: Use Arizona's Service Arizona website.

Registration Eligibility:

In order to be eligible to register in Arizona, you must:

  • Be a citizen of the United States;
  • Be at least 18 years old on or before Election Day;
  • Have resided in Arizona for the 29 days preceding the election;
  • Is able to write his or her name or make his or her mark, unless prevented from so doing by physical disability;
  • Not be barred from voting due to a disqualifying felony conviction; and
  • Not have been declared mentally incompetent by a court.

How to Register: Arizona residents may register in person, by mail, or online.


In order to register to vote online, you must have either an Arizona Driver’s License or an Arizona non-operating Identification Card. Applicants can apply to register on the Service Arizona EZ Voter Registration.

By Mail

In order to register by mail, you must obtain a mail-in registration form by:

In Person

You may register to vote in person by filling out a registration form at your County Recorder's office.

Identification Required for Registration:

The following is a list of acceptable documents to establish your citizenship:

  • A legible photocopy of a birth certificate that verifies citizenship and supporting legal documentation (e.g., marriage certificate) if the name on the birth certificate is not the same as your current legal name; 
  • A legible photocopy of the relevant pages of your passport;
  • Presenting to the County Recorder your U.S. naturalization documents or filling in your Alien Registration Number in box 11 of the registration form;
  • Your Indian Census Number, Bureau of Indian Affairs Card Number, Tribal Treaty Card Number, or Tribal Enrollment Number in box 10 of the registration form; or
  • A legible photocopy of your Tribal Certificate of Indian Blood or Tribal or Bureau of Indian Affairs Affidavit of Birth.

Only photocopies should be submitted with the registration form. Voters need to provide proof of citizenship if updating their registration after moving to a new county, but not if they moved within a county, changed their name, or changed their political party affiliation.

If You Want to Vote Early

For the 2016 election, early voting begins October 12, 2016 and all ballots must be received no later than 7:00 p.m. on Election Day. Counties may offer on-site early voting at the County Recorder’s office and other sites in the county. More information about early voting can be found by contacting your County Recorder’s Office or on the Arizona Secretary of State’s website.

If You Want to Vote Absentee

Arizona offers absentee early voting. Any registered Arizona voter is eligible for early voting; no special circumstances are necessary. Requests for early absentee ballots may be made in person, in writing, by mail, by telephone, by fax, by e-mail, or by Internet. Voters can also request to be placed on the list of permanent early voters and will automatically receive an early ballot for future elections. When the ballot is sent to the voter it will be accompanied by an affidavit that the voter must complete and mail with the ballot in order for the ballot to be counted. Ballots can be dropped off at any polling place within the voter’s county of residence.

The early voting absentee ballot request must be received by the voter’s County Recorder’s office by 5:00 p.m. 11 days before the election. Information on how to request an early ballot or permanent early ballot status can be found on the Arizona Secretary of State’s website.

Identification Requirements to Cast a Ballot

Arizona law requires voters to provide ID, but it does not have to be photo ID. Here is the list of acceptable forms of identification:

List #1 - Sufficient Photo ID including name and the voter’s registered precinct address (One Required)

  • Valid Arizona driver’s license;
  • Valid Arizona non-operating identification card;
  • Tribal enrollment card or other form of tribal identification; or
  • Valid United States federal, state, or local government issued identification. 

List #2 - Sufficient ID without a photograph that bears the voter’s name and registered precinct address (Two Required)

  • Utility bill of the voter that is dated within 90 days of the date of the election. A utility bill may be for electric, gas, water, solid waste, sewer, telephone, cellular phone, or cable television;
  • Bank or credit union statement that is dated within 90 days of the date of the election;
  • Valid Arizona vehicle registration;
  • Indian census card;
  • Property tax statement of the voter’s residence;
  • Tribal enrollment card or other form of tribal identification
  • Arizona vehicle insurance card;
  • Recorder's Certificate;
  • Valid United States federal, state, or local government issued identification, including a voter registration card issued by the County Recorder; or
  • Any mailing to the voter marked “Official Election Material.” 

List #3 - Mix & Match from Lists #1 & #2 (Two Required)

  • Any valid photo identification from List 1 in which the address does not reasonably match the voter’s registered precinct address, accompanied by a non-photo identification from List 2 in which the address does reasonably match the precinct register;
  • U.S. Passport without address and one valid item from List 2; or
  • U.S. Military identification without address and one valid item from List 2. 

Identification is valid unless it can be determined on its face that it has expired.

If you are unable to provide valid identification on Election Day, you should be provided with a conditional provisional ballot. The ballot will be valid and counted after you bring valid identification to your polling location before 7:00 p.m. on Election Day; to your County Recorder’s office within 10 calendar days after a general election that includes a federal office; or to your County Recorder’s office with five business days following any other election. Voters can find out whether their provisional votes were counted by checking the Secretary of State’s website.

VoteRiders has created Arizona voter ID info cards in English and in Spanish.

Moving within the Same County

The voter should correct his/her registration address at the appropriate polling place for his or her new address. The voter must present a form of identification that has his or her full name and new address. The voter must also affirm the new address in writing. The voter will then be permitted to vote a provisional ballot. The provisional ballot will be counted if the County Recorder can determine that you are registered to vote in the state, reside in the area covered by that polling place, and have not previously voted in this election.

Moving Between Counties

If you moved to a different county less than twenty-nine days ago, you may vote at your old precinct using a regular ballot.

If you moved to a different county more than twenty-nine days ago and have not registered to vote in your new county by Election Day, you may re-register to vote at your new address, but you cannot cast a regular ballot in either your former or new county.

Registering and Requesting an Absentee Ballot

UOCAVA voters can use the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) to register to vote and to request an absentee ballot. Visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program's (FVAP) Arizona-specific FPCA page.

UOCAVA voters may also register through the Arizona Secretary of State’s website or may request a registration card by calling 1-877-THE-VOTE (843-8683).

Receiving an Absentee Ballot

UOCAVA voters may receive their blank absentee ballots by U.S. Mail, fax, or electronic transmission. To request election transmission of the blank ballot, UOCAVA voters must mark the appropriate box and provide an email address on the FPCA (see Arizona-specific FPCA page). Ballots must be returned via U.S. Mail, online, or by fax.

Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot

The Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) is a back-up ballot that can be used by UOCAVA voters. You can use this FWAB whether you are located inside or outside the United States (including APO and FPO addresses). If you do not receive your regular ballot in time, you may use the FWAB. Your FWAB must be received by your local voting officials in Arizona no later than 7:00 p.m. on Election Day. For specific instructions, visit the FVAP’s Arizona-specific FWAB page.

If you have one felony conviction, Arizona courts automatically restore civil rights upon (1) completion of the term of probation or receipt of an absolute discharge from imprisonment, and (2) payment of any fines or restitution imposed. If you have more than one felony conviction, you must complete probation and apply to have your voting rights restored by the judge who discharged your probation.


Top Issues to Field

For more information for voters with disabilities, find a National Disability Rights Network partner in your area. 

For more information for student voters, visit the Student Voting Guide from the Brennan Center for Justice.

Information provided by Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights

Voting as a Student

As a student, you have a constitutional right to register and vote in the place you truly consider to be “home” — whether that’s your parents’ house, your apartment, or your dorm room. But before you make the important decision about where to vote, make sure you know the voting rules (and sometimes consequences) of registering to vote in that state.

More Info On Student Voting

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Election Information for your state