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Texas House Democrats walk out, freezing Texas special session

Texas State Capitol
Posted at 6:13 PM, Jul 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-13 20:31:38-04

WACO, TX — Tuesday, July 13, representatives took their set in a partially empty house chamber. Without quorum, nothing can be done.

Monday, July 12, Texas House Democrats flew to the nation's capitol in protest against the special session. 11 bills have the potential of being signed into law. Tuesday, Democrats took to Capitol Hill saying they left to protect democracy while Republicans took the house floor frustrated with their failure to show up.

The Republican backed house bill would add stricter voting laws. This legislation comes after a hotly contention 2020 presidential election. The bill would mail mail-in ballots harder, ban drive-thru voting center, and limit the hours at the poll.

Democrats say House Bill 3 is a reflection of Jim Crow Laws. They said it is racist and discriminatory, disenfranchising voters, and intimidating some from the polls.

"That is why we stand untied in preserving the democracy in Texas but the democracy in the United States," Rafeal Anchia Democratic State Representative said.

​"It makes it easy to vote and hard to cheat," Ben Leman, Texas State House representative said.

Representative Leman said walking out of the chamber with unfinished business is disrespectful.

"I showed up for work ready to roll up my sleeves and try to fight for the values of people from the district," Leman said. "When I see members vacate their post and abandon their duty, it's disheartening."

With a Republican led House, Democrats spoke out and said leaving the chamber before the vote was the only option. As another day goes by, Representative Leman said this political stand-off is not just affecting the voting rights bill.

"Millions of Texans are being abandoned," Leman said. "People are relying on bail reform, people that have lost loved ones. Now nothing is being done."

Other law makers said no resolution will be made without members out of the chambers. Representative John Raney told 25 News, Democrats need to 'Put your big boy pants on and come to work'.

"We are not doing this for Republicans, Democrats, Independents - we are doing this for Texas or anyone who deserves the right to vote. We are not going to buckle to the big lie," Anchia said.