Gov. Greg Abbott (R) joined Sen. Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston) and Rep. Briscoe Cain (R-Deer Park) at a press conference in Harris Co. to tout election integrity bills.

“The integrity of elections in 2020 was questioned right here in Harris County with the mail-in ballot application process,” Abbott said. “Election officials should be working to stop potential mail-in ballot fraud, not facilitate it.”

Then-Harris Co. Clerk Chris Hollins announced plans to send applications to vote by mail to all registered voters in the county. The Texas Supreme Court ruled he lacked the authority to do so as a public official. Political parties and other organizations can proactively send absentee ballot applications to voters. He sent applications to all voters over age 65, who are expressly eligible to vote by mail. Hollins also established a drive-up voting center, expanded early voting hours and established multiple locations where absentee ballots could be returned, although the latter effort was eventually ended by Abbott’s order and a court ruling.

Abbott made election integrity an emergency item, which permits the Legislature to consider related bills on the floor prior to the date the constitutional authorizes.

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