Local Voter ID Trouble Reported

City Councilmember Victor Hernandez is accusing local poll workers of turning away valid voters. The Lubbock Elections Office says this shouldn't be the case.

According to the Lubbock Elections Office, the early voting process has been smooth sailing. However, Councilman Victor Hernandez begs to differ.

Hernandez, who is currently in a recall election, says some voters are initially being turned away, thanks to the new voter ID law.

In a statement on his Facebook, Hernandez says that new law is "causing problems locally, especially since the interpretation of the new requirements by poll workers isn't not being applied consistently." He says that some of his constituents were initially turned away because their name on their voter registration didn't match verbatim that on their photo identification.

However, Kim Davis of the Lubbock Elections Office says IDs under the new law need not be perfectly identical -- only rationally similar. She also says they have yet to receive any complaints.

"If [your names are] enough different, you have an option one of two things," Davis says. "You can put your initials in next to your name where you sign in when you go to vote, or you can fill out a form to correct it for the next time down the line."

She says between those options, no valid voters should be turned away.  

The alleged problem seems to be with slight name discrepancies. Hernandez cited one man he knew, who encountered problems because his voter registration included his full middle name...but his driver's license simply had his middle initial.

Hernandez also cited this article from a Dallas newspaper, where it says one in seven early voters were forced to sign name verifying affidavits.

Davis says that's against policy. And, that shouldn't be the case here in Lubbock.

"As it is here, and how the state has told us, an affidavit cannot be forced," she says. "It is their option if they want to initial, or fill out the correction form in order to vote."

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