Washington — Heritage Action, the national conservative grassroots organization, today released a statement from Executive Director Jessica Anderson encouraging Texas to strengthen election-related legislation currently under consideration:
On Friday, the Texas House passed Senate Bill 7, a major election reform package. This is an excellent step towards passing a final bill. The House version contained several important reforms to increase transparency and security in Texas’s elections, but further steps are needed to strengthen the bill.
The reforms passed in Senate Bill 7 include:
- Ensuring poll watcher access to see and hear the process, promoting transparency;
- Strengthening prohibitions against vote harvesting and prohibiting paid ballot harvesting;
- Clarifying provisions regarding voter assistance, protecting voters from ballot intimidation;
- Prohibiting public officials from distributing unrequested vote-by-mail applications.
While these are good reforms, the legislation can be further strengthened by additional reforms. Legislators should be sure to include the following provisions as the bill goes to conference:
- Adding a voter identification measure that would make mail-in voting consistent with in-person voting standards;
- Prohibiting the use of any private funding by election officials to fund election operations;
- Expanding data used to verify citizenship to maintain the integrity of voter rolls;
- Improving maintenance of voter registration lists.