AUSTIN, Texas — With a bipartisan battle at play in Texas over the future of elections, ABC affiliate KTRK reports that the state’s No. 2 legislator, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, didn’t hold back at criticism levied against a Republican-led effort to fix what he believes is a vulnerable voting system.
A fiery news conference took place Tuesday to address state Senate Bill 7, which would impose sweeping restrictions that take particular aim at local efforts meant to make it easier to vote, like extended early voting hours.
Patrick told reporters at the Texas Capitol that critics have not done their homework into the bill, accusing them of race baiting. In addition, he took a number of leaders and corporate executives to task, including the executives of Texas-based American Airlines and Dell Technologies, who have been vocal over the bills.
Patrick and Gov. Greg Abbott have vowed to make voting laws a top priority in this current Texas Legislature session, especially with both chambers remaining in Republican control.
Even in the midst of criticism from Democrats and voting rights activists, who argue the bills would snuff out accessibility to the polls to people of color and those with disabilities, Abbott has gone as far as to boycott Major League Baseball, which pulled this year’s All-Star Game out of Georgia in the wake of new voting restrictions in that state.
The voting restrictions, likely to pass the legislature and slated to be signed by the governor, are almost certain to impact major Texas cities, where concepts like drive-thru balloting emerged in response to the pandemic.
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