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Just because you repeatedly say
something, doesn't make it the truth!
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Published August 5, 2021, in the
The Galveston County Daily News

The special session of the Texas State legislature is just about over and a new one is soon to begin.  At the beginning of the special session I testified on HB-3 (election integrity) before the House Select Committee on Constitutional Rights and Remedies.    What struck me was the throngs of people who testified saying HB-3 was about voter suppression and a Republican effort to make voting harder for minorities. It’s the same message we hear from the mainstream media.
There is an old adage; “If you say something long enough and often enough, it will be believed as true.”  The problem is, what is being said isn’t the truth, and no matter what they say, it won’t make it so. It’s like saying there is no God, but that doesn’t mean He doesn’t exist. 

I know what the opponents are saying about the election bills is false because I’ve carefully read both of the bills (HB3 and SB1).  

Let’s look at what the bills would have actually done.  They would have:
  • Increased the minimum hours for early voting; expanding Sunday voting hours while expanding the minimum voting hours during last week of early voting in 55 Texas counties. 

  • Expanded the requirement that companies let workers have time off to vote, applying it to Early Voting, not just Election Day.

  • Added the ability for an absentee voter to “cure” his/her ballot.  For example, if he/she forgot to sign the carrier envelope, they would have up to six days after the election to come in and sign it.  This is a completely new idea that helps ensure real absentee votes are counted.

  • Prohibited unstaffed drop boxes.  For integrity reasons, current law requires that a person dropping off an absentee ballot may only deliver their own ballot and must show identification.  Unstaffed drop boxes allow ballot harvesters to deliver any number of ballots and opens the opportunity for fraudulent voting.

  • Prohibited “drive through” voting by those who are capable of entering polling places. Current curbside voting for disabled voters who find it difficult to enter the polls and stand in line will not change.

  • Continued current law which allows poll watchers to see anything going on in the polling place, other than how a person is actually voting at a voting booth, while adding a provision that would prohibit election workers from obstructing poll watchers’ ability to observe.

  • Added a requirement that an absentee voter include their driver’s license number or the last four of their social security number in their mail-in ballot envelope.  This is the same information they are required to provide when registering to vote and would be used to verify the identity of the voter, especially if their signature on the carrier envelope is in question.

So, those opposing these bills are spreading false narratives, just one example of which was brought to light when Congresswoman Nancy Mace (R-SC) questioned Texas State Democrat Representative Thompson (D-Houston) about voter ID requirements in a hearing in Washington, DC
(see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDe7eMQ_dkE). 

House Democrats left the state to keep HB3/SB1 from being considered.  Maybe we should be asking ourselves, “Why?”  A leading state Democrat Senator said they might as well come home because they will end up voting on these measures anyway.  They need to stop acting like children and come home and do their job.

Author and Columnist
Authors and Columnists Bill Sargent and Mark Mansius
August 5, 2021