Free Speech For People represents Mi Familia Vota and individual voters in this challenge of a new voter suppression law enacted by the Texas Legislature. The lawsuit challenges Texas Senate Bill No. 1 (SB 1), a law designed to suppress votes from Texans of color and other marginalized communities through several measures.

Free Speech For People is pleased to partner with the law firms of Stoel Rives and Lyons & Lyons in this litigation.

This case challenges Texas’s SB1, which the Texas legislature passed in 2021 to suppress votes from Texans of color and other marginalized communities. For our 2020 lawsuit challenging voting practices and restrictions that that made voting more difficult during the 2020 election due to the COVID-19 pandemic, see Mi Familia Vota v. Abbott I.

Key Facts

Caption Mi Familia Vota v. Abbott, now known as La Union del Pueblo Entero v. Abbott
Court Western District Court of Texas
Docket No.


Status Closing arguments scheduled for February 1
Plaintiffs Mi Familia Vota and individual voters, La Unión del Pueblo Entero, OCA-Greater Houston, Houston Justice, and Lulac Texas
Defendants Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas; Jose Esparza, Texas Deputy Secretary of State; Warren “Ken” Paxton, Attorney General of Texas


As Free Speech For People’s complaint states, “Texas’s new voter suppression law, 2021 Texas Senate Bill No. 1, 87th Legislature (“SB 1”), is a calculated effort to disenfranchise voters. If allowed to stand, the bill will unconstitutionally burden qualified voters and inevitably prevent many voters from lawfully casting their ballots in future elections.”

SB 1 violates the First, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments to the US Constitution and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It uses the following measures to suppress votes:

  • prohibiting drive-through voting
  • limiting voting hours
  • making it unlawful for counties to automatically mail eligible voters mail-in ballot applications
  • implementing stricter rules for voting by mail
  • allowing election officials to reject allegedly defective ballots without notice to the voter prior to the election
  • implementing monthly purges of voter rolls
  • limiting physical and language assistance at the polls
  • enabling partisan poll watchers, which creates increased risk of voter intimidation.

Texas has a history of discriminating against Latino and Black voters. SB 1 was a response to the increased voter turnout in the 2020 election. Free Speech for People represents Mi Familia Vota in this challenge of SB 1, to protect the right to vote in Texas. Free Speech For People is pleased to partner with the law firms of Stoel Rives and Lyons & Lyons in this litigation.

Mi Familia Vota and individual voters v. Abbott was consolidated with five other cases and renamed La Union del Pueblo Entero v. Abbott. The Mi Familia Vota plaintiffs filed an amended consolidated complaint with another group of plaintiffs, including Houston Area Urban League, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc, the Arc of Texas, and Jeffrey Lamar Clemmons, who collectively are represented by the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Arc of Texas, Reed Smith LLP, and ArentFox Schiff LLP.

In August 2022, the district court denied the defendants’ motions to dismiss. The defendants appealed these decisions; the appeals are scheduled for hearing on July 12. In May 2023, the defendants moved for partial summary judgment of our claims. We strongly opposed these motions in responses filed with the district court in June 2023.  The case is set to proceed to the first phase of trial on September 11, 2023.

Major Case Developments and Documents


Photo by Vic Hinterlang /