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Abbott Signs Controversial Elections Bill, Declares 'Election Integrity Is Now Law' in Texas

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A controversial elections bill is now the law in Texas despite state Democratic lawmakers’ attempts to block its passage.

On Tuesday, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed the legislation after a months-long delayed caused by state Democrats denying Republicans the required number of lawmakers present to conduct business.

“One thing that all Texans can agree [on] and that is that we must have trust and confidence in our elections. The bill that I’m about to sign helps to achieve that goal,” Abbott said before he signed the bill.

He continued, “The law does however make it harder for fraudulent votes to be cast.”

The governor also declared, “Election integrity is now law in the state of Texas.”

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The new law bans drive-thru voting, 24-hour voting, and prohibits election officials from sending voters unsolicited ballot applications or encouraging mail-in voting. It also establishes new criminal and civil penalties for poll workers.

Republican lawmakers advanced the bill late last month after Democrats tried to block it by fleeing the state over the summer.

In May, Democrats blocked the passage of the legislation during a regular session of the legislature when they walked out of the state Capitol.

Abbott called a special session in July to once again try to pass the bill, but more than 50 Texas House Democrats fled to Washington, D.C., to try to block the bill and push Congress to pass a sweeping election overhaul bill.

Democratic leaders claimed the bill was “dangerous legislation that would trample on Texans’ freedom to vote.”

However, on Tuesday, Abbott highlighted a provision of the bill that expands the hours for early voting, “Texas provides 12 days of early voting, and this law even adds more hours during those early voting days. By comparison, the president’s home state of Delaware provides zero days and zero hours of early voting.”

“It ensures that Texas provides even more opportunities for people to engage in the voting process than the president’s home state of Delaware as well as many other states across the entire country,” he added.

Shortly after Abbot signed the bill, Democratic election lawyer Marc Elias filed a lawsuit to block the new law from going into effect.

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