The battle between Texas Democrats and Republicans is intensifying as Democratic lawmakers have fled the state to hinder Republicans’ efforts of passing the voter suppression bill.
As Democratic House Representatives blocked Republicans’ bids, Texas Republicans are exploring every option to make the sufferings difficult for them.
This is the second time that the Democratic lawmakers left the state capitol to prevent the legislature from having sufficient members to pass a voting bill that would have further restricted access to the ballot box in a state where voting rights are already restrained.
Texas Democrats in Action to Stop Republicans from Promoting Voter Suppression
Along with Senfronia Thompson, more than fifty Democratic house representatives have been out of Texas to save Texas voters’ right to vote.
This step from the Democratic members will hold the bill for a temporary period. The Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott has been furious with the actions of the Texas House Democrats and called on the authorities to arrest them on their return to Texas.
Republicans have also issued civil arrest warrants for them, but they remain inefficient to date.
Moreover, he urged that he will call another special legislative session to try for a third time to pass the voting bills with or without the presence of Democratic representatives.
The delegation, this time, has visited Washington, DC, to put the matter in front of Congress.
As Texas Republicans are meeting with federal Democrats to discuss the federalization of elections, Democrats, in general, are at a standstill as well to act for voting rights.
Despite having all plans at their disposal, they are being back-bitten by their own party members, which increases their worries at the federal level.
Texas Democrats have also been lobbying for the return of the “For the People Act” since January 2021 to change the new measures in the voting bill proposed by Republican legislatures.
The bill speaks of everything from campaign financing to instituting independent commissions to supervise redistricting.
The Texas Democrats in Washington are hoping that the Senate might pass a scaled-down version of the “For the People Act” or another bill, “The John Lewis Voting Rights Act.”
Electoral Fraud: Is it Really a Problem in Texas? Data Says No
Abbott, the Republican governor, is up now for another term in 2022. To be in the limelight for either positive or negative reasons is his necessity right now. Seeing Trump’s influence on the Republican party, he is in no position to go against his agenda of voter suppression.
Abbott is trying to make a mountain out of the molehill and is solving an issue that doesn’t even exist. There is zero evidence of any public fraud in the prior elections in Texas, as per the data.
Abbott is supposed to be a presidential nominee in the 2024 general elections; therefore, he is seeking media coverage and intentionally making it more intense.
In June, the University of Texas conducted a poll on the issue. The ratio of Texans who thought that ineligible people frequently cast ballots was only 19%. About 40% of people said that ineligible voters never/rarely cast votes.
Moreover, according to the survey, even the majority of Republican voters believe that vote fraud is not frequent in the state of Texas.
Only 31% of Republican voters said that ineligible voters were frequently casting ballots.
Moreover, 47% of Texas voters also said that the state should not prohibit counties from drive-through voting, which is one of the provisions of the contested bill.
A similar survey conducted by Pew Research Center also proposes some useful information contrary to Republican‘s envisioned results.
Sixty-one percent of Texans supported automatically registering all eligible citizens to vote, while 78% supported making the voting laws easier for people to vote on election days rather than curbing it.
Republicans are certainly playing across dangerous lines. Despite the popular perception, their efforts to introduce voting laws could backfire as it can damage their reputation among the Texas Republicans as well.
Without the presence of at least thirty Democrats in the House, Texas Republicans cannot pass any House bill. As only fourteen Democrats are in the state right now, Republicans are finding alternate options to pursue their repressive agenda.
Federal Democrats should endorse these efforts and try to do some legislation from the US Congress.
As they are not in a position to end the filibuster or pass the HR 1 without doing it, they can pass the bill on which Joe Manchin is ready to participate.
But that would also not end the Democrats’ tussle, as it would potentially involve the judiciary, which has also proven its loyalties with Republicans in terms of voter suppression.