Voter intimidation and its impact on turnout

Editorial Board

Since the results of the 2020 presidential election came under scrutiny over claims of voter fraud and electioneering, America has seen a rise in the population of people who are skeptical of the security of American elections. Far-right fringe organizations who tout the rhetoric of “The Big Lie” have become more vocal in the months leading up to the 2022 midterm election and have come out to ensure its “legitimacy” in force. Many have labeled this mobilization as voter intimidation.

Several extreme cases of this voter intimidation have come out of Arizona. Some voters have reported that they were filmed entering or leaving polling locations and filmed at ballot drop boxes by individuals who wore tactical gear. According to The Guardian, some were visibly armed. This has caused many voters in Arizona to feel unsafe in doing their civic duty to cast their vote, a right that should be protected under all circumstances. More cases have been reported even closer to home as well. According to an article published by Texas Public Radio, the Texas Civil Rights Project has received numerous reports of voter intimidation across the state. One of the most notable was in Travis County, where a Republican Party Chairman went door to door accusing people of illegal voting by mail, even though many were legitimately registered to cast their ballot in that manner.

The rise of voter intimidation in Texas and across the nation during the 2022 midterms is extremely alarming and should be combated with urgency. Texas voters deserve to cast their vote without fear of harassment or intimidation. As citizens, we must be vigilant against those who wish to endanger our right to vote at the polls.

If you see or witness an act of voter intimidation, do not hesitate to contact your local police department, report it to the Office of the Attorney General at (512) 463-2100, or contact the Texas Civil Rights Project’s hotline at (886) OUR-VOTE or (866) 687-8683.