DALLAS — On this week's episode of Inside Texas Politics, host Jason Whitely was joined by Congressman Marc Veasey, who discussed what he thinks the U.S. should be doing for Ukrainian refugees, along with the ongoing confirmation hearings for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson.
Also on Inside Texas Politics, we talked with a former Harris County clerk about mail-in voting in Texas.
Watch the full episode below.
Here's a recap of the show:
What should the U.S. do for Ukrainian refugees?
Congressman Marc Veasey says our country can do more than President Biden’s pledge that the United States would accept 100,000 refugees fleeing Ukraine.
“Let’s start at 100,000, but let’s look at doing more. We certainly can absorb a lot more than that. And I would support a higher number,” Congressman Veasey said on Inside Texas Politics.
And like much of America, the Democrat from North Texas is also keeping close watch on the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the United States Supreme Court. He praised Judge Jackson’s poise during intense questioning from Republicans, some of whom Veasey said intentionally brought up subjects that are completely irrelevant to her confirmation, such as Critical Race Theory.
“I really hate that it’s become so divisive,” said the Democrat. “I think that a lot of the questioning from Republicans are, quite frankly, intentionally racially driven.”
Mail-in voting in Texas
Former Harris County clerk Chris Hollins says partisan politics have mutated mail-in voting into a modern day bogeyman used by Republicans to instill fear in voters and their constituents.
And even though thousands of Texas voters, including many Republicans, had their mail-in ballots rejected due to recent changes to the state’s election law during the Primary in March, Hollins doesn’t expect Republican lawmakers to make any changes to the law during the next legislative session in January.
But he thinks it should be a priority.
“We have our parents and grandmothers and friends and family who vote this way because it’s a safe way to vote, it’s a convenient way to vote and frankly, our entire state should have access to be able to vote that way,” the Democrat said on Inside Texas Politics
Perhaps no location was riddled with more election related problems during the 2022 Primary than Hollins’ backyard of Harris County. There were broken machines, delayed reporting and some ten thousand votes that weren’t included in the initial tally.
“I know that they’re planning on bringing in some consultants to solve some of the operational challenges that are being faced and to make sure that there’s adequate resources in the department,” said Hollins. “And also, very importantly, that voters are being educated about the changes in the new law that have made voting a little bit more challenging.”
These days Hollins is running for Houston Mayor, an election that will be held in November 2023. As for this November, if you thought the Primary was bad, Hollins says wait for the general election.
“Some of the parts of the voter suppression bill have not yet reared their ugly head. And they will in November.”
F-35 jets from Texas to Europe
Jason Whitely was joined by the Texas Tribune’s Abby Livingston, as they discussed how F-35 fighter jets that are produced in Fort Worth have become a symbol of Biden diplomacy in Europe.
They are also a visual reminder of America’s air superiority.
Jason Whitely was joined by the Texas Tribune’s Abby Livingston and Ayan Mittra and the Fort Worth Star Telegram’s Bud Kennedy
They discussed Operation Lone Star and the Tribune’s reporting that the state is inflating the arrest numbers. The governor says it’s a success, but there’s no data supporting that. And they talk about a lack of accountability surrounding the boondoggle.
The panel also talks about Sen. Ted Cruz and the large number of headlines he made over the past week, from an airport meltdown to controversial questioning of Judge Jackson during the confirmation hearing. Will any of it have a lasting impact during an election?
Watch the full episode below: