WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Sunday, June 18, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed three election bills, including two targeting election administration in Houston’s Harris County. All three bills were sent to the governor’s desk last month at the conclusion of the state’s regular legislative session.
- Senate Bill 1070 allows the state to end its participation in the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). ERIC is a nonprofit organization used by states to ensure accurate voter rolls that has become targeted by election conspiracy theories in the last few years.
- Senate Bill 1750 abolishes the election administrator position within Harris County. The responsibilities now revert back to the county clerk and county tax assessor.
- Senate Bill 1933 authorizes the secretary of state to take over elections in Harris County. Once a takeover has begun, state officials would be authorized to change all aspects of election policy and fire election workers.
Last week, on June 13, Abbott also signed House Bill 1243 into law, raising the penalty for illegal voting to a felony. Previously, the penalty was only a misdemeanor and voting rights advocates warn that the bill would do nothing to deter illegal voting and cause unnecessary incarcerations.