09:01 AM

UST MPPA Student’s Policy Brief Lands on Texas State Legislators’ Desks

Ruchi GuptaPublic Policy and Administration Master's candidate, Ruchi Gupta, recently learned that her policy brief – a work product of a class on the administration of the elections – was selected to be presented to the Texas Legislature to improve security in elections. In the paper, Gupta discussed how biometrics could fix the voter registration databases and expedite the identification of voters at the polls through secure authentication.

A Texas Legislature lobbyist working for the integrity of elections wrote to Gupta, “Thanks so much for the incredible work you did on your policy paper. I have shared your paper with about a dozen Texas State Representatives. I am not sure they are ready to move on legislation at this time, but I think I can get a bill passed for a study of the potential for Texas.”

Gupta, who holds an engineering degree from India and an MBA from the University of Notre Dame, was pleased with the news and responded, “It's an honor that my policy brief has been chosen to support, in its own little way, the humungous task that you have undertaken to advance the democratic governance of this great country. I was drawn to this issue after I had the pleasure of attending your lecture on Current Issues in Public Administration. Since then, I have been keenly following all election news and trying to decipher the multi-layered voting system of the U.S.”

In her native country, Gupta had a media background that afforded her the opportunity to closely witness a phased rollout of the ambitious biometric system, which digitally captured the smallest activity of every citizen.

“When linked to the electoral database, it had the capacity to eliminate most irregularities in the voting process,” she said. “That is why I am so passionate about this project for the U.S, especially because I had the good fortune of witnessing the nuances of the largest democratic exercise — the Presidential elections of 2020.”

The lobbying group told Gupta that it will contact her if there is an opportunity to meet in person, or by Zoom with an interested Texas State Representative on her recommendations.