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Abbott Indicates at Least 2 Special Sessions on the Horizon

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Thursday morning, while being interviewed on the radio by Chad Hasty, Gov. Greg Abbott all but confirmed there will be at least two special called legislative sessions.

While he stopped short of giving a specific time for the first special session, he indicated that it would address election integrity, bail reform, and potentially other issues. The other special called session, which will be held around September or October, will be specific to redistricting and the use of federal COVID-19 funding.

Abbott said, “I’m not going to engage in Monday morning quarterbacking, but I’ll treat this as halftime. We didn’t get this done in the first half, but we’ll get there in the second half.”

Brief History

On May 30, a majority of Texas House Democrats walked out while they were considering the omnibus election integrity bill, or Senate Bill 7. This brought the total of legislators present under 100, therefore “busting quorum” and rendering the bill dead. It also meant that several other bills or conference committee reports that were waiting to be called up died as a result. One of those included the conference committee reports related to bail reform, like House Bill 20 or House Joint Resolution 4, which were also emergency legislative priorities of Abbott.

The following day, Abbott tweeted his intent to potentially defund the Legislature as a result.

In the week leading up to the end of the 87th Legislative Session, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick publicly requested Abbott call a special legislative session in June to address what he deemed as conservative priorities that died in the House of Representatives. Abbott responded by calling Patrick’s request “goofy” and instead sought to lay out the structure by which he would call a special session on his terms.

What it all Means

All of this is happening

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