Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday signed into law a bill that bans 24-hour and drive-thru voting, imposes new hurdles on mail-in ballots and empowers partisan poll watchers.
What We Know:
- Texas joins Florida and Georgia, in enacting new restrictive voting measures, instigated by former president Donald Trump’s lies about widespread voter fraud. At least 10 other states are considering similar laws in their state houses. Opponents of SB1 said its provisions will disproportionately restrict voting access for marginalized voters, particularly black and brown people of color and those with disabilities.
- Democrats in Texas fled the Capitol in Austin for weeks in an effort to stymie the bill — first preventing the passage of a similar measure at the end of the state’s regular legislative session in May, then forcing Abbott to call two special sessions to tackle what the governor called “election integrity.” The election overhaul in Texas comes as Republicans seek to hold onto power in a rapidly changing state where people of color make up virtually all of the population growth — and that growth is concentrated in large cities that tend to vote Democratic.
- The new law directly targets Harris County, the home of Houston (22.6% Black), which last year offered drive-thru voting and 24-hour early voting. The bill restricts the hours counties can offer early voting to between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. while also prohibiting tactics that aide voter participation and engagement. In the 2020 general election, Harris County used a garage at the Toyota Center, enabling voters to vote from their cars amid the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“SB 1 is an appalling, anti-democracy effort by Texas Republicans to construct barriers to voting for people they believe will not support them. What makes this bill and similar ones Republicans are pushing across the country even more un-American is that Republicans are using the ‘Big Lie’ about the 2020 election as a pretext to support them. The reality is that these bills have nothing to do with election integrity or security, but rather are discriminatory measures making it harder for all people to vote. These bills will have a disproportionate impact on communities of color.” –Eric Holder, US attorney general for US President Barack Obama
- Senate Bill 1 also blocks counties from sending unsolicited mail-in voting applications, even to those over the age of 65, who are immediately eligible to vote-by-mail, per law. The rules include restrictions for those who previously helped persons with disabilities and enables partisan poll watching, a tactic long used by republicans and white supremacists to intimidate Black people from voting.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated.
Former NFL Champ Nate Burleson joins CBS Mornings
Former NFL player Nate Burleson has officially made his hosting debut on the newly branded morning talk show, CBS Mornings.
What We Know:
- It was announced earlier this month that Burleson would replace Anthony Mason. Previously Mason joined Gayle King and Tony Doukoupil as host of the former CBS This Morning. The show was rebranded in tandem to the relocation of their set to Times Square and Burleson joining the cast.
- Since 2017, former NFL player Burleson has been the host of Good Morning Football on the NFL Network and has served as an analyst on The NFL Today on CBS. Burleson will continue his role on The NFL Today.
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- Burleson is the second former NFL player to join a network morning TV show, with Michael Strahan playing a major role as a co-host on ABC‘s Good Morning America.
Burleson credits Michael Strahan as the ‘blueprint’ for his career path, explaining, “He’s one of those individuals that I took a liking to once I retired because he rewrote the blueprint. I don’t want to say that he is the blueprint, because there has been plenty of players that have transitioned out of the game into TV. There have been African American men and women before him that have done the same thing, but he is a guy that has shown me the lay of the land, especially being a transplant from the West Coast to now New York.”
Classes canceled at Howard University as US Government investigates ransomware cyberattack
Howard University officials along with leading cyber experts are trying to assess what has been compromised in an active ransomware, cyberattack on the HBCU campus. Officials have deemed the attack criminal.
What We Know:
- Monday, the university issued a statement to faculty and students that “the service disruption was caused by a ransomware cyberattack against the university.”
- Classes have been canceled for Tuesday and Wednesday. Students have been notified that online and hybrid classes will remain canceled and only essential staff will be allowed on campus. All in-person undergraduate, graduate, professional, and clinical experiential courses will resume as scheduled on Wednesday.
- A ransomware attack can be triggered by simple, everyday activity. Opening a unintended link inside of can lead to a cyberattack. Computer, tablet and phone users are encouraged to change their passwords and security questions regularly.
Howard University is home to several notable high profile Black alumni such as Chadwick Boseman and Phylicia Rashad.
Polo G Reportedly Arrested in Los Angeles on Concealed Weapon Charge
Polo G was arrested on in Los Angeles on Monday, TMZ reports.
What We Know:
According to the outlet, Polo G was arrested after police allegedly found a concealed firearm on the Hall of Fame rapper, which TMZ points out is a felony. The supposed discovery of the firearm occurred when a vehicle Polo G was a passenger in was stopped.
It’s currently unclear why the vehicle was pulled over in the first place but it was reported that a male juvenile was also detained during the stop.
Polo was similarly arrested while he was in Miami for his Hall of Fame album release party. The arrest, which took place back in June, resulted in the rapper getting hit with charges of of battery on a police officer, resisting arrest with violence, and criminal mischief. The rapper was also a passenger in a vehicle at the time of that arrest.