“He’s facing the possibility of an extremely harsh sentence,” he said. “Second-degree felonies are normally reserved for aggravated assault, and to apply it to Mr. Rogers’s case, it just shows how unjust that is.”
Texas’ attorney general, Ken Paxton, who is under investigation for professional misconduct after he challenged President Biden’s win in court, brought the charges against Mr. Rogers. He has made it a mission of his office to prosecute voter-fraud cases, which are very rare in the United States and tend to be minor mistakes when they do happen.
“Hervis is a felon rightly barred from voting under TX law,” Mr. Paxton wrote on Twitter. “I prosecute voter fraud everywhere we find it!”
Republicans in Texas and other battleground states have been pushing aggressively to restrict voting laws since former President Donald J. Trump began making false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him. On Thursday, Republicans in the Texas Legislature presented plans to overhaul the state’s election apparatus for a second time this year. They outlined a raft of proposed new restrictions on voting access that would be among the most far-reaching election laws passed this year.
For some, Mr. Rogers’s case evoked another recent prosecution in the state.
In 2017, Crystal Mason was sentenced to five years in prison for casting a provisional ballot in the 2016 presidential election while she was on supervised release for a federal tax fraud felony. Her provisional ballot was not counted, and her case is pending before Texas’ highest criminal appellate court after Ms. Mason filed for an appeal.
After she was convicted, Ms. Mason served 10 months in federal prison for violating her supervised release, but she has remained free on a $20,000 bond in her voting case, as she pursues her appeal in state court, her lawyer, Alison Grinter, said. If Ms. Mason loses her appeal, she will have to begin serving her five-year sentence, Ms. Grinter said.
Mr. Rogers and Ms. Mason may meet in the coming weeks, Ms. Grinter said.
“They share a bond that neither of them wanted at this point,” Ms. Grinter said. “She really feels for him, and knows what it feels like to be made political sport of like this.”
On Friday, Ms. Mason expressed support for Mr. Rogers.
“I wish this had never happened to you,” Ms. Mason wrote on Twitter. “I’m sorry that you’re going though this. Welcome to the fight.”
Michael Levenson contributed reporting.