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Texas legislature close to approving measure to make voting more difficult By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Voting rights activists collect throughout a protest in opposition to Texas legislators who’re advancing new voting restrictions in Austin, Texas, U.S., May 8, 2021. REUTERS/Mikala Compton

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(Reuters) – The Texas Legislature on Sunday moved nearer to approving a sweeping invoice that curtails voting alternatives within the nation’s second most-populous state, as Republicans fast-tracked the measure earlier than the legislative session closes.

After an in a single day debate, the state Senate voted alongside celebration strains to cross the invoice, whose provisions embrace limiting early hours to forged ballots, banning drive-through polling websites and inserting new necessities on voters.

The measure, which follows Republican strikes to impose voting restrictions in different states, now goes to the House, additionally dominated by Republicans, which has positioned the invoice on its calendar for late Sunday afternoon, with the legislative session due to expire at midnight.

Republican Governor Greg Abbott has indicated he’ll signal the invoice into regulation.

The invoice would bar Texans from utilizing 24-hour polling websites or forged ballots at drive-through polling locations situated in parking garages and plenty. It additionally would ban cellular items or short-term constructions from getting used as polling locations.

The laws additionally locations new necessities on Texans who need to vote by means of the mail and would bar election officers from sending unsolicited mail-in poll functions to voters. It additionally would make the removing of disruptive ballot watchers more difficult.

President Joe Biden stated in an announcement on Saturday that the laws in Texas “attacks the sacred right to vote.”

“It’s wrong and un-American,” Biden stated. “In the 21st century, we should be making it easier, not harder, for every eligible voter to vote.”

Republican lawmakers throughout the nation have pursued more stringent voting restrictions within the wake of former President Donald Trump’s false claims of election fraud. So far, 14 different U.S. states have enacted 22 legal guidelines this yr that make it more difficult for Americans to vote, in accordance to a report launched on Friday.

Earlier this month, dozens of corporations – together with American Airlines (NASDAQ:) Group Inc, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (NYSE:) Co and Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:) – urged legislators to reject any regulation proscribing entry to ballots.

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