A restrictive voting bill was advanced by the GOP in haste as they worked overnight to rapidly push through fresh limitations. The Republicans have long alleged that Texas voter fraud was responsible for the swing in votes. Only a few days into the special legislative session of 30 days, a Texas House Committee voted early on Sunday to go through with a fresh Republican-backed bill that would bring back most of the proposals that failed to get through in spring.
Following suit will be a panel of Senate lawmakers after a long public hearing on their version of the legislation that went on into the night on Saturday. The Republican majority committee votes will finally put the bills on a voting path this week by a full chamber.
The Democrats had walked out and broke the quorum in late May over a similar Republican priority voting bill from the regular legislative session. That move had effectively stopped that bill and led Governor Greg Abbott to call a special session.
Texas Voter Fraud A Bill Lie Allege For Democrat Congressman
While GOP lawmakers in the state have long alleged that Texas voter fraud was a reality and a threat to democracy, Democrats have cited statistics to dismiss the allegation.
While the fresh bill has been watered down after dropping some controversial provisions. There are no longer calls to restrict voting hours or to make it easier for judges to overturn results.
But the Republican authors of the bill are still going ahead with proposals to ban 24-hour voting options and ban drive-through, increase access for partisan watchers and restrict local officials from proactively giving out applications for a mail-in ballot. There are also attempts to confine further voters’ participation through restrictive voting-by-mail rules, including the introduction of new ID requirements for absentee voters.
Over 250 people signed up to testify before the senate on the Texas voter fraud bill, including Democrat Beto O’Rourke, a former Congressman. He said that the legislation proposes to introduce bills to suppress voters’ rights. He compared them to the arsonists who light fires in the first place but are praised for putting them out.
He says that while there has been all-around agreement that there isn’t a statistically meaningful degree of voting fraud, going for restrictive voting practices is talking about a problem that doesn’t exist in the first place.
Texas has been trying for a long time to bring in restrictive voting practices and has received impetus from disgraced former Presidents calling the 2020 presidential election a lie.
Voting rights advocates and Democrats have for long called the Texas voter fraud bill discriminatory and unnecessary. They argue that it will impinge upon the rights of voters of color and the disabled. There is a voter fraud allegation against 44 out of 11 million voters who voted in the Presidential election.