Texas’ controversial elections bill cleared the state House Friday afternoon, clearing its way to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk after a months-long battle that drove Democrats to flee the state in an attempt to block its passage.
Senate Bill 1 was lauded by Republicans as a means to better secure future elections, but was chastised by Democrats as an effort to restrict voting access following former President Donald Trump’s discredited claims that the 2020 election was fraudulent. It passed on an 80-41 vote that fell largely along party lines.
The Texas House considered dozens of amendments during a marathon session Thursday, and the bill now heads to the Senate for the provisions adopted to be approved before heading to the governor’s desk. Abbott, a Republican who has championed the issue, has vowed to sign it.
More than 60 House Democrats who fled Austin Monday to prevent a vote on election reforms will be arrested when they return to Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott said.
“Once they step back into the state of Texas, they will be arrested and brought to the Texas capital and we will be conducting business,” Abbott said.
The 67 Democratic lawmakers flew on chartered flights to Washington D.C. in protest of proposed legislation seeking to reduce the chances of fraud in future elections. The legislation is one of a number of measures being considered during a July special session called by Abbott.
Vice President Kamala Harris is so out of touch with the illegal immigration crisis, Republicans argue, that she’s visiting the wrong part of the Texas border.
Ahead of Harris’ Friday tour of the El Paso Border Patrol Central Processing Center, Texas U.S. senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz implied that she didn’t know what she was doing.
Cornyn said Harris was going to the wrong place, posting a map on Twitter of where she should be going – the areas where the flow of illegal immigration is the heaviest – the Rio Grande Valley Sector.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas) announced on Thursday that the state of Texas will take action on its own to address the worsening border crisis, including by building its own border wall and taking extra steps to arrest illegal aliens who are released by federal border authorities, according to CNN.
Abbott made his announcement at a Border Security Summit with other Texas officials present, saying that he would dedicate $1 billion to border security and create his own task force to address the issue.
Abbott said that the efforts would build off of his disaster declaration that was issued last week, which directed Texas’s Department of Public Safety to more strictly enforce laws against criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking, while also allowing the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to crack down on “any child care facility that shelters or detains unlawful immigrants.”
The Biden administration threatened to sue Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott if the state follows through with plans to stop working with the federal government to detain migrant minors, according to a letter from federal officials Monday.
Abbott issued a disaster declaration on May 31 that ordered all facilities operating on federal contracts to house migrants who entered the country illegally to close. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said Abbott’s declaration illegally discriminates against the federal government’s 52 state-licensed facilities operating in Texas to house unaccompanied migrant minors.
“The May 31 Proclamation discriminates against the Federal government by targeting the licenses held only by those entities providing shelter to ‘unlawful immigrants or other individuals not lawfully present in the United States under a contract with the federal government,’” according to HHS.
Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday that he would veto funding for his state’s legislature after Democrats delayed the passage of an expansive elections bill.
Democrats in the state House quietly left the floor late Sunday with just hours to spare in the legislative session, preventing the bill from coming up for a vote. If signed into law, Senate Bill 7 would enhance voter ID provisions, empower partisan poll watchers and ban ballot drop boxes and drive-thru voting centers, which were used disproportionately in Texas’ biggest counties.
It would also make it easier to overturn an election in the state, allowing courts to throw out the results of an entire election if the amount of illegally cast votes exceeds the margin between two candidates, regardless of which candidate received more fraudulent votes. In 2020, there were just 43 documented cases of voter fraud, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Texas officials said Thursday they’re worried about dramatic spikes in drug overdose deaths in some areas of the state as illegal border crossings and drug trafficking have picked up since President Joe Biden took office.
Gov. Greg Abbott joined Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steve McCraw and Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn on Thursday in Fort Worthto provide an update on the border crisis.
“We’re heading for a 50 percent increase in overdose deaths in Tarrant County alone,” Waybourn warned, noting that the amount of drugs flooding into Tarrant County has skyrocketed even with DPS intervention.
Gov. Greg Abbott on Thursday sent a letter to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris asking them to designate Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations.
The cartels are bringing terror into Texas communities, Abbott said in his fourth letter to the administration about the border crisis.
The cartels “smuggle narcotics and weapons into the United States to fund their illegal enterprises,” Abbott writes. “They force women and children into human and sex trafficking – enriching themselves on the misery and enslavement of immigrants. They murder innocent people, including women and children. These Mexican drug cartels are foreign terrorist organizations, and it is time for the federal government to designate them as such.”
Nearly one year after first shutting down the state last March, Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday announced Texas would reopen 100% beginning March 10. The statewide mask mandate is also terminated effective next Wednesday.
Abbott rescinded previous executive orders (GA-17, GA-25, GA-29, and GA-31) in a new order issued Tuesday, Executive Order (GA-34), because of the progress Texas has made in reducing the spread of the coronavirus, along with new treatments and greater availability of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Texas plans to sue the Biden administration over several executive orders recently issued, and immigration policy is front and center.
“A new crop of Texas-led lawsuits awaits Joe Biden’s White House,” Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted. “Texas will take action whenever the federal government encroaches on state’s rights, or interferes with constitutional rights, or private property rights or the right to earn a living.”
The Texas Supreme Court has ordered the release of Shelly Luther, the Dallas salon owner who was sent to jail for violating the state’s coronavirus stay-at-home order.
State District Judge Eric Moyé on Tuesday sentenced the owner of the Salon A La Mode to seven days behind bars for “disobeying a judge’s temporary restraining order prohibiting her from operating her salon,” according to CBS-DFW.
Texas governor Greg Abbott said he plans to issue an executive order next week to reopen businesses in Texas, although he didn’t offer specific details.
A judge ruled Thursday that Jeff Younger has a say in whether or not his 7-year-old son goes through a gender transition.