Despite unyielding attempts by the Texas GOP to suppress voting rights in Harris County, Judge Hidalgo has stood firm, denouncing the un-American attempts to suppress votes. Shortly after taking office, Judge Hidalgo saw the implementation of nationally-recognized actions to increase voter participation by making voting more convenient, secure, and accessible to all residents. This entailed a $17 million investment in innovative policies like extended voting hours and drive-through voting, which dramatically cut long wait times. Some of Judge Hidalgo’s work on protecting voter rights include:
- Establishing the Office of the Elections Administrator. Under this new office, Judge Hidalgo appointed the County’s first-ever Elections Administrator. The new role acts as the county voter registrar, administering all local, state, and federal elections in Harris County, and overseeing County elections operations, including voter registration, public education and outreach, and recruitment and supervision of election judges and poll workers.
- Taking the fight for voting to Austin. Judge Hidalgo has worked with the County attorney to litigate any threats to Harris County voting rights, in effort to protect the constitutional rights of eligible voters.
- Expanding Access to Polling Places. Judge Hidalgo took on voting access at the first Commissioners Court she presided over once taking office. She moved to approve county-wide voting centers to assure residents could vote at any polling location on Election Day to avoid long wait times and scheduling constraints for working residents. And in 2020, her innovations – including drive-thru voting and 24-hour voting – led to the largest turnout in Harris County in a generation.
To read more about other work Judge Hidalgo has done on protecting voting rights, click here.