AUSTIN, Texas - Fifty percent of applications for mail-in ballots in Travis County have been rejected as of Jan. 13, says the county clerk's office.
Many other counties are experiencing the same high rejection rate, says the office. Williamson County reported to FOX 7 Austin that their rejection rate is 40% because of similar issues.
The rejections come after Texas' new Senate Bill 1 was signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott in September. SB1 now requires mail-in ballot applicants to include either a Driver's License number or the last four digits of their Social Security number on the application.
That number is then verified against the applicant's voter registration record. If the ID provided is not in the record on file, the law requires the application to be rejected.
The Travis County Clerk's Office says that at this time, it does not have enough information regarding the state's new online cure process in order to instruct voters on how to cure their application with the Secretary of State. Also, it says it has not received instructions from the state on what it can do to assist voters in submitting a complete application.
The controversial election reform bill, which took two special sessions last year to pass the legislature, also bans 24-hour and drive-thru voting, sets new regulations on early voting hours, and increases protections for partisan poll watchers. \
Republicans have said the new law ensures election integrity and protects against voter fraud while Democrats call it voter suppression and say there is no evidence of widespread fraud in Texas.
Several federal lawsuits have been filed including one by Harris County and others by community and advocacy organizations.
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