On a party-line, 5-4 vote, the House Elections Committee passed Senate Bill 7 by Sen. Bryan Hughes (R-Mineola) after a committee substitute replaced all of the bill’s provisions with the text of House Bill 6 by Rep. Briscoe Cain (R-Deer Park). The bill passed after the committee re-convened following the end of the House floor session. An effort to pass the bill before the House session without recognizing objections or amendments failed when a Republican committee member said he would “pass” on voting on it.

Prior to passing the substituted bill, the committee rejected a series of Democratic amendments on party-line votes, including provisions to permit online applications for absentee ballots, permit election judges to remove poll watchers, require a study of the impacts of the bill on minority groups and address voter intimidation.

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