Supporters gathered at Juan in a Million in Austin on Tuesday night to celebrate 167th District Judge candidate, Efrain De La Fuenta. De La Fuenta lost to David Wahlberg, who won with 56 percent of the vote. Despite his loss, De La Fuenta was optimistic and thanked his supporters. – By Lizzie Chen, News21
Despite efforts by advocacy groups to engage the Latino community, Austin’s Hispanic voters comprised just seven percent of the turnout in Travis County, said Linda Chavez, state director of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC).
That is typically low for the county, Chavez said, and she thinks the delayed Texas primary, originally scheduled for March 6, played a roll in the low turnout Tuesday.
The Latino community has a pattern of low voter turnout, and engaging future voters is a topic LULAC plans to discuss at its state convention June 7-10, Chavez said.
By Lindsey Ruta, News21
A federal judge has stopped the state of Florida from requiring that the League of Women Voters and other third-party organizations comply with a state law that sets a 48-hour deadline to deliver voter registrations.
U.S. District Judge Robert S. Hinkle ordered the injunction, based upon the analysis that Florida’s regulations for registering voters would impose a “harsh and impractical” deadline for organizations turning in voter registration applications.
By Ethan Magoc, News21
Statewide turnout among registered voters in the Republican primary was 11.05 percent, the highest in the last 20 years for a GOP presidential candidate, .37 higher than 2008.
For the Democrats, turnout was 4.49 percent, the lowest in 20 years after record turnout of 22.54 percent in 2008.
Clear Lake resident Mary Vance campaigns for Tea Party candidates outside the Taylor Lake Village City Hall voting precinct in Houston, Texas.
Vance is a member of the Clear Lake Tea Party, whose efforts are similar to the King Street Patriots, known nationally for their poll-monitoring activities.
“We work side by side [with the King Street Patriots] when we can,” Vance said. “They would support us, but we kind of have different agendas.”
The Clear Lake Tea Party also founded chapters in the neighboring cities of Galveston, Alvin and Pearland.
By Lindsey Ruta and Ana Lastra, News21
A San Juan, Texas, polling place remained open Tuesday after an individual was shot nearby, a local election official confirmed.
The incident occurred among individuals campaigning near a fire station that serves as a polling place in Hidalgo County, in southern Texas. Under Texas law, campaigning is banned within 100 feet of the entrance to a polling place.
Hidalgo County Elections Administrator Yvonne Ramon confirmed the shooting, and said the victim has received medical assistance.
By Annelise Russell, News21
“The Texas Voter ID bill is one of a number of pieces of legislation that Republicans and the fringe extremists are trying to pass in this country. All of it is meant to divide and make weaker the people who are likely to vote for the Democrats. It’s hard enough to get people out to vote, especially when there is a tradition in the low income groups and put forth (to) intimidate people to keep them from voting. … It has been stated again and again that there is little fraud to have shown to have happened in Texas, and they simply won’t pay attention to that.”
By Lizzie Chen, News21
Jose A. Velásquez, president of Hermanos de East Austin, has registered more than 180 voters in the last three months to encourage political involvement in East Austin, Texas. Photo by Lizzie Chen/News21
“Every month, on the national level, 50,000 Latinos become 18 and become eligible to vote, so that is 600,000 new eligible voters from the Latino communities. So clearly, they are worried about us. We have a tendency as a community to be more in line with the Democratic party, and I think Republicans are concerned about that. So we clearly represent the future, not with only the local community of this state but this nation, too … and they are concerned with our potential to affect the political landscape locally and statewide and on a national level.”
By Lizzie Chen, News21