Gov. Abbott responds to Dems walkout: 'No pay for those who abandon their responsibilities'

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Monday, May 31, 2021
Abbott responds to Dems walkout on Twitter, vowing 'no pay'
After a Democratic walkout in the state House of Representatives, Abbott said there will be "no pay for those who abandon their responsibilities."

AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- Gov. Greg Abbott issued a strong response on Twitter following a walkout in the state House of Representatives Sunday night by Democrats saying there will be "no pay for those who abandon their responsibilities."

In a tweet posted by the governor on Monday, he vowed to veto Article 10 of the budget, which funds the legislative branch.

The tweet was posted on Abbott's personal Twitter account and ended with "Stay tuned."

Texas Democrats pulled off a dramatic, last-ditch walkout in the state House of Representatives to block passage of one of the most restrictive voting bills in the U.S., leaving Republicans with no choice but to abandon a midnight deadline and declare the legislative session essentially over.

The revolt is one of Democrats' biggest protests to date against GOP efforts nationwide to impose stricter election laws, and they used the spotlight to urge President Joe Biden to act on voting rights.

RELATED: President Joe Biden says Texas voting bill is 'part of an assault on democracy'

But the victory may be fleeting: Abbott, who had declared new voting laws a priority in Texas, quickly announced that he would order a special session to finish the job. He called the failure of the bill "deeply disappointing" but did not say when he would drag lawmakers back to work.

"We've said for so many years that we want more people to participate in our democracy. And it just seems that's not the case," Democratic state Rep. Carl Sherman said.

Republicans showed restraint in criticizing Democrats for the move.

SEE ALSO: How Texas elections would change and become more restrictive under bill

"I am disappointed that some members decided to break quorum," said Republican state Rep. Briscoe Cain, who carried the bill in the House. "We all know what that meant. I understand why they were doing it, but we all took an oath to Texans that we would be here to do our jobs."

Texas is the last big battleground in Republicans' campaign to tighten voting laws, driven by former President Donald Trump's false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him. Georgia and Florida have also passed new voting restrictions, and Biden on Saturday had unfavorably compared Texas' bill to election changes in those states as "an assault on democracy."

Under revisions during closed-door negotiations, Republicans added language to the 67-page measure that could have made it easier for a judge to overturn an election. The bill would have also eliminated drive-thru voting and 24-hour polling centers, both of which Harris County, the state's largest Democratic stronghold, introduced last year.

The video featured above is from a previous report.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.