WASHINGTON, D.C. — In the past few days, the Texas Senate has advanced multiple anti-voting bills. Several bills were approved by the Senate State Affairs Committee, while others passed the full Senate and moved on to the state House. Given Republican control of the legislative process in Texas, all of these bills have a good chance at being enacted into law.
On April 3, the State Affairs Committee voted to send the following bills to the Senate floor:
- Senate Bill 220, which would create a system of election marshals to investigate alleged violations of election law. The proposal mirrors the new Office of Election Crimes and Security in Florida.
- Senate Bill 823, which would grant the secretary of state the authority to remove a county election administrator under certain circumstances, even if issues are not the fault of the administrator.
- Senate Bill 1600, which would require voters to prove their citizenship when registering to vote.
- Senate Bill 1750, which would eliminate the position of election administrator in counties with a population of 3.5 million or more (Democratic stronghold Harris County is the only county with this many people).
- Senate Bill 1993, which would give the secretary of state the authority to order an election to be rerun in counties with a population of more than 2.7 million (again, only Harris County has this many people) under certain circumstances.
Meanwhile, the full Senate voted on April 6 to pass Senate Bill 1950, which advanced from the State Affairs committee on March 30. The bill would create a new criminal penalty for election officials who suspend a statutory requirement that would require a mail ballot to be rejected.
Texas’ legislative session is scheduled to end on May 29.