Texas Democrats Not Popular In Texas

That's why they're in DC.

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Chuck DeVore, vice president with the Texas Public Policy Foundation, gives us an update on the status of Texas Democrats in Texas. It isn’t good.

DeVore: Texas House Democrats continue their quorum-busting, COVID-19-spreading walkout in Washington, D.C. as they take their public relations disaster to the U.S. House of Representatives Thursday morning in a hearing bearing the ominous title of “Democracy in Danger: The Assault on Voting Rights in Texas.”

Texas Democrats fled to D.C. to stall Republican efforts to pass a well-needed overhaul of the Texas Election Code. Oddly, they’d be hard-pressed to identify even one provision of the bills that they were able to amend several times that would make it tough for a legal voter to cast a ballot. That’s why Democrats are losing—both on optics and on policy.

The Texas House of Representatives has 150 seats with 100 needed to conduct business. There are 67 Democrats, so at least 17 would need to return to work in the special session called by Gov. Greg Abbott before legislation can be considered. The main point of contention revolves around voter ID. In Texas, Republicans want to extend voter ID protections for mail-in ballots—an increasingly popular way to cast a ballot.

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Georgia and Florida recently passed similar provisions asking by-mail voters to write their driver’s license number or other number from a government-issued ID inside a privacy flap on the return envelope. Democrats claim such provisions are racist. Furthermore, some now fear electoral “catastrophe” if the provisions stand.

Texas Democrats have been in D.C. since July 12 begging Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Schumer, and Vice President Harris to pass federal legislation outlawing voter ID. They haven’t gotten an audience yet with President Joe Biden, though not for the lack of trying.

The federal “For the People Act” would also require same-day registration, eliminate checks for citizenship eligibility, expand mail-in balloting, and place severe restrictions on efforts to maintain accurate voter lists, removing dead voters and those who have moved away. There’s a reason why Texas Democrats are focused on changing election law at the federal level rather than in Texas where they were elected to do a job in the legislature—their proposals aren’t popular with Texans.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation, America’s largest state-based conservative think tank, where I serve as vice president, commissioned a statewide poll by RMG Research, an independent public research firm operated by Scott Rasmussen, of 1,000 registered Texas voters from July 20-23. The poll found overwhelming support for voter ID and overwhelming disapproval for Democrat’s efforts to ban it. Eighty two percent of Texas voters support voter ID, including 75% of Black voters, 81% of Hispanic voters, and 72% of Democrats.

With regards to extending voter ID safeguards to mail-in ballots—now only validated by a subjective signature match, if it’s done at all—67% of Texans approve. As for efforts by national Democrats to strip voter ID provisions in Texas and 34 other states, 51% oppose the bill, 38% strongly oppose it, 40% support banning ID to vote, though only 22% register strong support. More polling out of Texas suggests that Democrats are walking on thin political ice in their efforts to roll-back voter ID via a federal law preempting state election laws.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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