The Fight For Voting Rights in Texas

Texans came to the State Capitol on June 20th to fight for voting rights in opposition to state Republican bills of voter suppression and voter intimidation.

Led by Beto O’Rourke’s Powered By People campaign, the rally brought together a state-wide coalition to support the courageous Texas State Representatives who walked out to kill Senate Bill 7 that would have restricted voting hours and poll locations, restricted mail in voting, required increased voter identification and would have empowered vigilante poll watchers. Now that the U.S. Senate has filibustered SB 1 – which would have given Federal voter protections – the fight in Texas becomes even more critical as Governor Abbott has called a July 8th Special Session of the Legislature to enact the stalled voter suppression bills.

All hands are needed this summer to maintain the free right to vote in Texas and America. Sunday’s rally at the Capitol brought together many of the key Texans deeply engaged in that fight. They all need our active support. The speakers were led off by Austin’s Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Judge Andy Brown. Civic, progressive and religious leaders across the state spoke with passion on voting rights and voter registration. Texas Democratic Party leaders Dr. Carla Brailey and Gilberto Hinojosa were there with a challenge to get involved.

Highlights included Texas State Representatives who led the recent fight to stop Senate Bill 7, including Sheryl Cole, Erin Zwiener, Jasmine Crockett, Nicole Collier, Trey Martinez Fischer, Chris Turner, John Bucy III, Michelle Beckley, Jessica Gonzolez, Jasmine Crockett, Gina Hinojosa. State Senator Royce West lit up the crowd as did Secretary Julian Castro of San Antonio.

Special guest Luci Baines Johnson was on fire, describing the work her father, Present Lyndon Johnson accomplished in passing the breakthrough voting rights legislation sixty years ago that we are still fighting to preserve today. Congressman Lloyd Doggett described the importance of voting rights and his work in the U.S. Congress to create a national voting rights agenda. Beto O’Rourke wrapped it up with an impassioned plea for action to demand voting rights at every turn and to support all the representatives and senators working on this existential issue.

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