The officials held a meeting in Texas for proposing new voting restrictions in the state closed on Friday morning after dragging on for almost one day after several Texans lined up to share their personal thoughts on the bill – one of now over 350 similar voting restriction bills reportedly filled across forty-seven states of the country, which critics criticized as Republican-led voter supersession efforts.
The Texas House Committee’s hearing on Elections ended at around 06:00 am. Friday morning after starting at 08:00 am on Thursday. This public event attracted several Texans who attained the chance to speak before the committee – on House Bill 6, which the Brennan Center for Justice names as another wide-ranging voter suspension bill.
The U.S. House Bill 6 is one of the two omnibus bills aiming at election reform going through the state government. The bills suggest new measures such as prohibiting drive-through voting and making it difficult to get an absconder ballot. Moreover, another big voting reform bill – Senate Bill 7 – passed the Texas Senate on a party-line 18-13 vote on Thursday.
Art Fierro, the Texas State Representative, said on Friday morning that after twenty-two hours, the House Committee on Elections suspended. In the tweet, he further said that he would like to thank the hundreds of the residents of Texas who came out to testify and waited so patiently for their voices to heard. He also showed his gratefulness to these people.
After 22 hours, the House Committee on Elections has adjourned. I would like to thank the hundreds of Texans and that came out to testify and so patiently waited for their voice to be heard. We are so grateful. #txlege pic.twitter.com/gjGTPsT7zJ
— Representative Art Fierro (@ArtFierro79) April 2, 2021
Background Meeting Aiming New Polling Restrictions
Texas is the latest Republican-controlled state that is moving to push through recent restrictions on voting. Brian Kemp, the Governor of Georgia, signed the latest law into place last week. The new law led to a massive reaction, including lawsuits from civil rights groups claiming the law violates the Voting Rights Act.
Another effort is going through the Florida legislature. According to the Brennan Center, around 361 bills introduced up till now this year in forty-seven states all over the country intended to restrict ballot access. Several of those bills could fail to approve or take effect in states where they could have a slight impact.
However, Democrats have special concerns about the efforts in states such as Georgia, Texas, and Florida, since Democratic leaders perceive all of those as swing states, and all carry a huge haul of Electoral College votes. Additionally, Democratic representatives in Congress are eager to enact the For the People Act, which would pass countrywide voting standards and could mainly reverse restrictive new state legislation.
Major Texas-based companies, such as Dell and American Airlines, have already raised their voices against the bills considered in Texas. The voting law of Georgia is also facing similar pushback from some big companies.