Gov. Abbott holds news conference endorsing new election integrity legislation

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HOUSTON (KETK) – Governor Greg Abbott will be in Houston Monday morning to discuss new legislation for election integrity, a top priority for Abbott this session.

The press conference is scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. and will be streamed here.

East Texas State Senator Bryan Hughes (R-Mineola), the chairman of the State Affairs Committee, said that the bills were “already in the process” even before the 2020 election.

“Texas has been working on election integrity for a while. “This was already in process, but then the 2020 election was so in the national spotlight, and so many people have questions, so many people have concerns. I would say that has raised the profile of the issue.”

State Sen. Bryan Hughes

Former President Trump’s consistent lie that the 2020 election was stolen convicted nearly 75% of Republicans in a December Quinnipiac poll that there was widespread fraud in the election.

This despite the fact that Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office spent 22,000 man-hours searching for voter fraud in the state. Out of nearly 17 million registered voters, only 16 ballots with fraudulent addresses were found, or roughly 0.00000094%, according to The Houston Chronicle.

Many of the bills would address different ways that Texans voted during the pandemic, such as expanded drive-thru voting and mail-in ballots. Texas Republicans sued over Harris County’s drive-thru voting back in the fall, but courts refused to throw out the ballots.

Abbott cited the cocaine-for-votes school board example over the weekend to Fox News host Maria Bartiromo, where he claimed Democrats want to “protect ballot harvesting.”

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick put up a $1 million reward on Nov. 10 for evidence of fraud that led to the arrest and conviction. So far, Patrick has not paid out any of that money.

In December, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued four battleground states and claimed the states made unconstitutional changes to their election laws. The conservative-leaning Supreme Court rejected that argument and refused to hear the case. In January, Paxton traveled to Washington, D.C. to take part in the “Stop the Steal” rallies. He later falsely blamed the Capitol riots on Antifa.

EDITOR’S NOTE: An earlier version of this story included a sentence that read: “Out of nearly 17 million ballots cast, only 16 ballots with fraudulent addresses were found…” This has since been updated for accuracy to say “Out of nearly 17 million registered voters, only 16 ballots with fraudulent addresses were found…”

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