Willie Nelson, wife struggled to vote absentee in primary

Nelson and his wife made two attempts before they succeeded in obtaining absentee ballots from Travis County elections officials

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Even country music legend Willie Nelson found it hard to vote absentee in the March 1 primary under new Texas election laws, his wife said.

Nelson and his wife made two attempts before they succeeded in obtaining absentee ballots from Travis County elections officials, wife Annie D’Angelo-Nelson told the Austin American-Statesman.

She said their first applications were rejected because of inconsistent identification information provided on the forms. She said they’re concerned for those wanting absentee ballots but aren't as tech-savvy as her and her musician-husband.

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Willie Nelson performs in concert during The Luck Banquet on March 13, 2019 in Luck, Texas. 

Willie Nelson performs in concert during The Luck Banquet on March 13, 2019 in Luck, Texas.  ( Gary Miller)

Texas threw out mail votes at an abnormally high rate during the nation’s first primary of 2022, rejecting nearly 23,000 ballots outright under tougher voting rules that are part of a broad campaign by Republicans to reshape American elections, according to an analysis by The Associated Press.

Roughly 13% of mail ballots returned in the March 1 primary were discarded and uncounted across 187 counties in Texas. Experts said anything above 2% generally draws attention.

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In this Feb. 6, 2019 file photo, Willie Nelson performs at the Producers & Engineers Wing 12th Annual GRAMMY Week Celebration at the Village Studio in Los Angeles.

In this Feb. 6, 2019 file photo, Willie Nelson performs at the Producers & Engineers Wing 12th Annual GRAMMY Week Celebration at the Village Studio in Los Angeles. (Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

Most of the rejected ballots, according to county election officials and the Texas secretary of state, failed to adhere to the new identification requirements.