Fort Bend County Judge KP George weighed in on the controversial voting bill being debated in the Texas Legislature that would put more restrictions on how Texans can vote.
In a letter addressed to Texas House Elections Committee Chairman, Rep. Briscoe Cain (R-Baytown) over the Easter weekend, George said that Senate Bill 7 and other restrictive voting rights laws in other states such as Georgia are working to suppress the vote.
“Undoubtedly, we have come a long way and must continue working to ensure a stronger, more vibrant, and more accessible democracy for all of our residents,” he said in the letter.
George touted how Fort Bend County made bipartisan changes before the 2020 elections, with county commissioners voting unanimously to extend voting hours, turning the Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land into a mega-voting site and creating drive-thru voting for those who were unable to walk inside a voting center.
“Our bipartisan leadership also unanimously supported initiatives to support election security and accessibility by advocating for an online voter registration application portal for eligible voters, funding more efforts to increase civic engagement in our communities, and to create a tool for registered voters to track their mail ballots,” George wrote.
“While Fort Bend Republicans and Democrats came together to champion accessibility for voters in the modern era, we know our state and county have a dark history of voter suppression. As states like Georgia implement draconian anti-democracy measures like prohibiting granola bars and water in lines to vote for working-class Americans, we are seeing the ugly head of Jim Crow once again making the rounds at the Texas Legislature.”
Republicans in Texas, Georgia and several other states are pushing changes to voting procedures following the 2020 elections, where Republicans are claiming to find ways to prevent voter fraud, although there was no established fraud discovered in November’s election.
Cain came under fire two weeks ago when he abruptly ended a hearing in the Texas House early after citing a parliamentary rule prevented him from continuing the hearing after not setting a time of recess. Over 100 people had set up to speak at the hearing, including former U.S. House Rep. Beto O’Rourke.
Cain is also a big supporter of former President Donald Trump and volunteered to help the Trump campaign with its baseless voter fraud claims.
The bill would prevent counties from enabling drive-thru voting, stop election officials to send mail-in voting applications to those who don’t request one, prohibit 24-hour voting stations, ban voting in temporary structures such as tents, and would allow partisan poll watchers more leeway in watching and interacting with voters at polling locations.
Major corporations like American Airlines and Dell Technologies have came out against SB 7, while Major League Baseball decided to pull the All-Star Game out of Atlanta after Georgia passed its election security laws.
Because of MLB’s move, Gov. Greg Abbott announced that he would not participate in the opening day ceremonies at the Texas Rangers’ home opener Monday afternoon and would boycott any MLB activities.
“It is shameful that America’s pastime is not only being influenced by partisan political politics, but also perpetuating false political narratives,” Abbott said, adding that he “will not participate in an event held by MLB, and the State will not seek to host the All-Star Game or any other MLB special events.”