Explained: What is the controversial Texas voting bill?


The text of the bill indicates that it is a law relating to elections, including the integrity and security of elections; create criminal offences; provide for civil penalties. What is this legislation about?

Projet de loi sur le vote au Texas, quIn this May 6 file photo 2021, a group opposing the new election legislation gathers outside the House Chamber of the Texas Capitol in Austin, Texas. (PA)

Texas Democratic lawmakers walked out on Sunday night in the state House of Representatives to block passage of a controversial bill that will make it harder for people to vote in state elections.


So what is this bill?

Legislation called SB 7 passed the House along party lines earlier this month. The Texas Tribune notes that among the most significant measures of the legislation include limiting how local authorities can expand voting options, regulating the distribution of polling places in urban areas, requiring paper trails for voting, establishing new rules for mail-in voting, regulating county donations, establishing new rules for removing people from voter rolls, improving the freedom of poll watchers, and requiring registration of the counting of votes.

The text of the bill indicates that it is a law … relating to elections, including the election integrity and security; create criminal offences; provide for civil penalties.




What is this legislation about?

According to the Brennan Center for Justice, this year various states have already enacted more than 15 laws that will make it harder for Americans to vote . The center also notes that more than a third of those bills are in three states, including Texas and Michigan which have nine each and Wisconsin which has seven trying to restrict the vote.

jordan spith net worth 2017 State Rep. Nicole Collier, D-Fort Worth, Legislative Black Caucus Chair, speaks during a press conference at the Capitol on Sunday 30 may 2021, against Senate Bill 7, known as the Protecting the Integrity of Elections Act. (PA)

Furthermore, while at least 30 mobile bills in 15 States would restrict the ability to vote by mail, two bills in Wisconsin would eliminate the ability for voters to receive a postal ballot for each election. Other such bills in different states will limit voting by imposing new, stricter voter ID requirements, expanding voter purge practices and increasing barriers to voter registration.

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Even before the US presidential elections last year, the US Postal Service (USPS), which is one of the nation’s largest and most trusted public institutions, was at the center of a political row with Democrats on one side insisting that more Americans be given access to mail-in voting and Republicans on the other opposing this d request alleging that there is more risk of fraud with postal voting. In the run-up to the election, former President Donald Trump has repeatedly asserted that mail-in voting would lead to fraud in the electoral process.

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Amid the pandemic, various Democratic-controlled states, including Florida, Michigan, North Carolina and Ohio, have allowed mail-in voting for all. On the other hand, some Republican-controlled states, including Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi, opposed allowing mail-in ballots. What did critics say?

Critics of the bill see the move as an attempt by Republicans to make it harder for voters, especially minorities , to vote. In a statement, US President Joe Biden called the Texas legislation un-American and said it was part of an attack on democracy that we have seen far too often this year and that often disproportionately targets Americans. blacks and browns.

And I continue to call on all Americans, of all parties and of all persuasions, to stand up for our democracy and protect the right to vote and the integrity of our elections, he added. According to the New York Times, Democratic lawyers have promised they will take legal action once the bill is passed and signed into law by the governor.

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