AUSTIN (KXAN) — A settlement may be in the works for a lawsuit brought forth after the Texas Secretary of State’s office released a list of thousands of names of voters it said may not be citizens. As the counties dug in further, they discovered many of the people on the list turned out to be citizens after all.
Meanwhile, lawmakers on federal oversight committees in Washington, D.C. are opening an investigation into the release.
Civil rights and voter groups sued after Secretary of State David Whitley sent the list of 95,000 names to counties throughout Texas in January. The state’s attorneys and the state’s director of elections, have repeatedly argued the list of names was supposed to be further investigated by local county elections officials and treated as a “weak” match.
On March 25, Whitley provided settlement terms to each of the lawsuit plaintiffs, according to a document filed Wednesday in court.
“As of today, Secretary Whitley is the only party to have provided a written settlement proposal, and
he expects the plaintiffs’ responses in the coming days,” the document stated. The groups and Whitley will meet April 1 to discuss his proposal.
On Thursday, two U.S. House Democrats sent a letter to Whitley, saying the Committee on Oversight and Reform would be investigating the situation.
“We are disturbed by reports that your office has taken steps to remove thousands of eligible American voters from the rolls in Texas and that you have referred many of these Americans for possible criminal prosecution for exercising their right to vote,” Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D-California, and Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Maryland, wrote.
They requested documents related to communications Whitley and his office had with each other, the Texas Department of Public Safety, Attorney General Ken Paxton, Gov. Greg Abbott, election officials and others.