Abbott Calls For Harsher Penalties For Protest-Related Offenses

This week in Texas politics with the Texas Tribune

By Alexandra HartSeptember 25, 2020 1:43 pm,

It’s time for the week that was in Texas politics with Alex Samuels, political reporter for The Texas Tribune.

Gov. Greg Abbott this week hit back at protestors, announcing several new legislative proposals that would raise penalties and create new crimes for offenses carried out during demonstrations.

“Such as creating felony-level offenses for causing injury or destroying property during with what is deemed to be a riot,” Samuels said. “Felony offenses for blocking hospital entrances, and using lasers to target police. Striking an officer for something like a water bottle, for example, would also lead to a mandatory minimum of six months in jail.”

Meanwhile Abbott is catching flack from within his own party over an order extending early voting due to the coronavirus pandemic. Several prominent Texas Republicans, including Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller and State party Chair Allen West filed a lawsuit against the governor over the order, which moved the early voting start date up to October 13.

“The plaintiffs argue that Abbott needs to consult the legislature before making these decisions, and they implied that a special legislative session is needed,” Samuels said.

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