Election integrity is poised to be one of the top issues facing the Legislature when they reconvene this week.

Ahead of the legislative session, State Rep. Mayes Middleton (R–Wallisville) filed two election integrity bills to prevent voter fraud and ensure only legally qualified citizens are voting in elections.

“The 2020 election made it painfully clear that there are dire consequences from inadequate or unenforced election integrity laws. One fraudulent vote is one too many—it undermines the legitimacy of the people’s voice. We must ensure that Texas elections are protected,” said Middleton.

The first bill, House Bill 1026, outlines a strong state oversight of voter rolls, mandating the Secretary of State to maintain voter rolls to ensure only legally qualified citizens are registered and requiring citizenship verification of those registering to vote—as well as removing those that are not.

The second bill, House Bill 1029, would shorten the validity of a driver’s license for a legal noncitizen to one year to prevent noncitizen voting.

In light of election integrity concerns surrounding the 2020 elections, Middleton says Texas must become a leader on election integrity reforms.

“Texas must lead the way on this issue. We cannot become like Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, or Georgia. I will fight to ensure that Texas has secure elections. Passing these bills [is] vital to this effort,” said Middleton.

Delegates to the Republican Party of Texas’ convention last year deemed election integrity their top legislative priority for the session. In March, more than 98 percent of Republican voters approved a proposition to purge illegal voters from the voter rolls and verify each new registered voter is a U.S. citizen​.

The 87th Legislative Session begins at noon on Tuesday, January 12.

Iris Poole

Iris Poole is a 2021 Texas Scorecard Fellow from Round Rock. She is freedom-loving and had an early interest in liberty and politics.