Deliveries begin as House Speaker Phelan signs 52 civil arrest warrants for missing Democrats

State News

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Texas House Sergeant-At-Arms began delivering civil arrest warrants around the Texas Capitol Wednesday. The day before, Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan officially signed civil arrest warrants for 52 House Democrats still absent for the second special session of the year, according to a spokesperson for Phelan.

It’s all part of an effort to achieve the quorum needed to advance legislation.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Texas House voted 80-12 to move forward with the arrests after the Texas Supreme Court overturned a district judge’s ruling that prevented them from calling for Democrats’ arrests.

Nexstar’s Maggie Glynn saw the Sergeant-at-Arms walking around the Texas Capitol Wednesday. Many offices were empty, but a staffer was inside the office of Rep. Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston). Below, watch as he reads the warrant.

House Democrats originally fled the state capitol to Washington, D.C., in July during the first special session to break quorum and halt GOP-backed voting legislation from passing, which they say will make it harder for minorities and people with disabilities to vote.

House Republicans argue the legislation will make elections more secure and streamlined across the state.

Democrats were able to stop the legislation from passing during the first special session, but Gov. Greg Abbott called for a second session, which began this past weekend.

On Monday, a Texas Senate committee voted to advance the voting regulations bill, named Senate Bill 1, according to the Texas Tribune.

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