Denying Republicans a quorum to enact voting restrictions will cost Texas Democrats north of $1 million, according to the state legislator leading the fundraising effort.
More than 50 Democratic members of the state House fled Austin for Washington, D.C., last Monday, paralyzing the House just as the GOP was advancing sweeping changes in elections during a special session. Under the Texas Constitution, the Legislature requires a quorum of two-thirds of lawmakers to be present to conduct state business in either chamber.
The price of keeping the Democrats out of Texas through Aug. 7, when the session expires, is expected to be around $1.5 million, state Rep. Armando Walle said in an interview.
Walle said the pair of private charter jets the majority of legislators took to Washington cost more than $100,000, while housing, food and other transportation costs will make up the bulk of other expenses.
Who is paying for the exodus has been an open question, as the legislators fled in a hurry without a fundraising plan.
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Vice President Harris met with Texas Democratic lawmakers in Washington, D.C. Tuesday to thank them for their efforts to block a Republican-backed restrictive voting rights bill.