DALLAS (NewsNation Now) — All eyes have been on Georgia, but the fight over voting rights is very much heating up in Texas with some calling it the next battleground state for this issue and how to navigate future elections.
The colossal clash over voting laws is growing bigger by the day in Texas with lawmakers and major corporations trading contentious blows over the issue.
“It’s always been the case that big business wants to get in bed with big government,” stated Texas Senator Ted Cruz. “These woke corporations have decided to become the political enforcer for Democrats in Washington.”
Last week, hundreds of companies, including heavyweights like Facebook, Netflix and Microsoft, released a joint statement opposing Republican-led legislation in states like Georgia and Texas to restrict the voting process.
Texas-based giants American Airlines and Dell Technologies announced their aversion to tightening voter laws as House Bill 6 and Senate Bill 7 make their way through state legislature. In tandem, the bills would restrict early voting hours, limit polling locations and mail-in ballots, and ban most drive-through voting for Texans.
In response to American and Dell’s opposition, Texas Republican Lt. Governor Dan Patrick released a statement saying, “Texans are fed up with corporations that don’t share our values trying to dictate public policy. The majority of Texans support maintaining the integrity of our elections…”
“Their primary goal they say is to limit voter fraud. That is obviously not something that happens as frequently as they say it does. But it is certainly something that their base cares about and is really concerned about,” University of Houston political science professor Brandon Rottinghaus.
State Democrats say they’re concerned these legislative efforts would limit opportunities for Texans and Americans to vote.
“It’d make it harder for counties—like the county election division right here in Travis county to do things like sending out vote by mail applications, promoting vote by mail applications, which have proven to be safe,” said Austin judge Andy Brown.
On Wednesday alone, the Texas House Elections committee considered a dozen more Republican bills with the same end goal.
The GOP, zeroing in on Houston’s Harris county, one of the largest and most racially diverse in the country –not to mention the state’s democratic stronghold.
Additionally on Wednesday, State Representative Briscoe Cain, a Republican, proposed financial penalties for corporate entities that threaten “any adverse action” against Texas in protest of election legislation in the years 2020, 2021, and 2022 under the watch of Governor Greg Abbott.
Abbott has taken up election integrity as one of his top priorities this legislative session. Texas is the biggest state where Republicans have vowed to make sweeping changes since president trump claimed that fraud cost him the 2020 election.