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You are here News Health Citing a burden on minority voters, US judge overrules Texas governor's exemption for masks at polls

Citing a burden on minority voters, US judge overrules Texas governor's exemption for masks at polls

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Judge orders face masks at polls in texasA federal judge has ordered everyone who enters or works at a Texas polling place to wear a face covering.

The order by U.S. District Judge Jason Pulliam, appointed by President Donald Trump, voided an exemption for polling sites that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott had included in his statewide mask mandate.

The exemption, Pulliam ruled, violates the Voting Rights Act “because it creates a discriminatory burden on Black and Latino voters.”

The pandemic has disproportionately affected minorities, placing them at higher risk of severe illness and death and forcing them to make “the unfortunate choice required between voting and minimizing their risk” of exposure under Abbott’s poll exemption, the judge wrote.

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