Attorney General Greg Abbott has filed an amended complaint to a lawsuit challenging the federal government’s decision to reject the state’s Voter Identification legislation.

Now, the state is taking it one step further. It wants Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act declared unconstitutional. That is the section of the law that requires Texas and some southern states to get federal approval for any election law changes.

The Voter ID legislation falls in that category, as do Texas’ redistricting maps. The Department of Justice denied preclearance for Voter ID, Monday. That case is now being considered by a Washington D.C. district court, which will decide if the case should go to trial.

We are still awaiting a decision from a three judge panel in Washington on preclearance for those maps. In the meantime, a San Antonio district court has drawn up interim maps that will be used for the 2012 election.

It its complaint, the state argues that Section 5 "exceeds the enumerated powers of Congress and conflicts with Article IV of the Constitution as well as the 10th Amendment," and should be declared unconstitutional.