Briscoe Cain succeeds on his second try to pass voter suppression bill out of committee

by | Apr 30, 2021 | Policy, Voting

If at first you don’t succeed, try again. House Election Chair Briscoe Cain took that mantra to heart in his second attempt to pass the voter suppression bill Senate Bill 7 in his committee. And it worked.

Last night, Cain brought SB 7 up for a vote in his committee for a second time without any public testimony. On a party-line vote, it passed through committee and now heads to a wider vote in the state house. Republicans in the committee also voted down several amendments, including one that would have looked at racial disparities in election investigations.

Cain’s move was blasted by several civil and voting rights organizations. Anthony Gutierrez, the Executive Director of Common Cause Texas issued a blistering statement about Cain, and the “perversion of [the] democratic process” in advancing SB 7. “At a minimum, bills are given public hearings, public notice is given for those hearings and people have a chance to weigh in for or against. Depriving Texans of a public hearing on such a consequential piece of legislation constitutes a flat-out assault on our democratic process,” said Gutierrez.

Rose Clouston, the Texas Democratic Party Voter Protection Director, also issued a statement following last night’s vote. “These are some of the shadiest moves yet from a party hellbent on slashing our voting rights. Republicans have decided to do the work of voter suppression in the shadows, ignoring their constituents’ concerns and experiences. They are abandoning normal procedures because it would be inconvenient for them to hear the outpouring of condemnation from everyone who believes in the foundation of our democracy — voting rights,” said Clouston.

SB 7 is now headed to the Calendars Committee, which will likely set a hearing for the bill on the house floor.

+ posts

A longtime writer and journalist, Jessica was thrilled to join the Texas Signal where she could utilize her unique perspective on politics and culture. As the Features and Opinion Editor, she is responsible for coordinating editorials and segments from diverse authors. She is also the host of the podcast the Tex Mix, as well as the co-host for the weekly SignalCast. Jessica attended Harvard College, is a onetime fitness blogger, and has now transitioned to recreational runner (for which her joints are thankful).

Are you tired of Texas Republicans pushing big lies and trying to steal your vote? So are we, that’s why we’re fighting back against the right-wing lie machine. Our commitment to ethical, fact-based journalism is vital to our democracy, and we can’t do it without you. Consider donating today to help us stay in this fight.

Continue Reading

Texas Senate passes anti-trans sports bill

Texas Senate passes anti-trans sports bill

The Texas Senate passed a bill on Wednesday that would ban trans youth from playing on sports teams consistent with their gender identity. The Republican-led Senate voted 19-12 in favor of passing the legislation. This is the fourth time the proposed law has come...

Will Democrats have to stomach a former Bush strategist?

Will Democrats have to stomach a former Bush strategist?

Matthew Dowd has been teasing at a run for statewide office in Texas, particularly a bid against Lt. Governor Dan Patrick. The former George W. Bush strategist turned political pundit shares a similar journey to a number of other conservatives who have switched sides...