The Texas House approved a raft of new voting restrictions Friday, as majority Republicans seeking to hold on to power in a rapidly changing state finally overcame months of delays by Democrats who said the measure will raise new barriers to the ballot box for marginalized voters.
The House voted 80-41 to approve Senate Bill 1. It now moves back to the state Senate to iron out minor differences with the House’s version of the bill before heading to the desk of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, whose strong-arm tactics — including calling lawmakers into two special sessions this summer with instructions to approve “election integrity” measures after the Democratic boycott had stymied earlier versions — paved the way for the bill’s passage.
Opponents warned that the bill would make voting harder for people of color, who often back Democrats, as well as people with disabilities — in part by outlawing the all-night and drive-thru voting that Houston conducted during the 2020 election.
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