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Texas Matters: How the TX-GOP is targeting fair elections

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Ryan Poppe

The Texas Senate’s State Affairs Committee has advanced multiple anti-voting bills to the Senate floor. The bills impact different aspects of elections in the Lone Star State, including in-person voting, election irregularities and voter purges. Given Republican control of the Texas Senate, all of these bills have a good chance at advancing further in the legislative process.

These are bills that will do nothing to make elections more secure – since elections in Texas are already secure. But they will make the elections less fair – because they will eliminate portions of the population from voting. And these are people who are more likely to vote for the Democratic Party.

Matt Angle is the founder and director of the Lone Star Project and a democratic consultant.

Justice Thomas' Secret Vacations

Since 2004 U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has reported only two gifts on his required annual financial disclosure forms.

And according to the Washington Post – in the last five years Thomas has reported zero – not one gift.

And we know that is a lie.

Not only did Thomas receive multiple gifts, but they were worth hundreds of thousands of dollars and they came from a Texas billionaire real estate developer Harlan Crow.
Reporting from Politico reveals that for over 20 years, Thomas would take annual trips on Crow’s super yacht to the world’s most exotic locations – where he was wined and dined.
And it was all secret hidden from the public and not reported on disclosures form that are required by law.

Alex Mierjeski is part of the ProPublica investigative reporting team that exposed Thomas’ secret luxury vacations.

On Friday Thomas released a rare public statement saying he was advised he didn’t need to disclose the expensive gifts and trips because this was personal hospitality from a dear personal friend.

Congressional Democrats have called for investigation into the matter and for a stronger ethics code for the justices.

Some have called for Thomas to be impeached from the Supreme Court.

David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi