Attorney General Paxton released an opinion that outlines the formal process for a legislator or a member of the public to inspect or obtain copies of Texans’ anonymous voted ballots. By doing so, the opinion establishes a crucial new tool in the fight for free and fair elections and should boost confidence in Texas’s elections and promote transparency in government, while upholding voters’ constitutional right to a secret ballot.
As Attorney General Paxton’s recent successful prosecution of vote fraudsters proves, the work to fully secure our elections remains among the most important work of the Attorney General’s Office.
“The people of Texas deserve to have leaders who work tirelessly to promote transparency in government and integrity in our elections, and that’s exactly what I continue to do,” said Attorney General Paxton. “This opinion will help create new processes that can be used to verify our elections have been conducted fairly and without any fraud. My office continues to lead from the front in the battle for election integrity, and we won’t back down until our elections are completely and totally secure.”
Following both the Texas Constitution and the requirements of the Texas Election Code, the opinion outlines the legal framework needed for the Secretary of State and the election records custodian to work together in achieving both ballot preservation and public access to anonymous voted ballots.
“Anonymous voted ballots are election records under the Election Code, and the Legislature has established procedures aimed at both preserving those records and granting public access to them,” the opinion states.
Read the full opinion here.