Texas House gives final approval of controversial election integrity bill

Nick Natario Image
Friday, August 27, 2021
House gives final approval of controversial election integrity bill
After hours of debate and some changes were made to Senate Bill 1, it's heading back to the Senate for approval. Here are the different scenarios that could play out.

AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- After a couple hours of debate, the Texas House gave a final approval of the controversial election integrity bill.

SEE RELATED STORY: Texas House speaker Dade Phelan bans word 'racism' during debate over elections bill

Senate Bill 1 was passed by the House in a vote of 80 to 41, marking the third reading of the bill.

It received preliminary approval late Thursday night as lawmakers returned Friday for a final vote.

Republicans took to the podium to show support for the bill, saying it will make elections more secure and combat fraud. They want to make voting universal across the state, and said Harris County shouldn't have different voting measures than everyone else.

However, Democrats argued it would hurt minorities. They also touted their efforts to break quorum for several weeks and plead with U.S. Senate members to pass federal voting legislation.

A broken quorum is caused when a minimum number of lawmakers needed to conduct business do not show. The quorums have not allowed Republicans to pass legislation that could ban drive-thru and 24-hour voting, among other sweeping restrictions.

MORE: What it means to break quorum in Texas House of Representatives

The House also made changes to the Senate's version. This means the bill must now head back to the Senate.

If the Senate approves the House's changes, the bill heads to the governor's desk. If not, a conference committee will be established with members from both chambers to work on changes.

The Senate is set to meet Friday at 2 p.m.

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