More Texas Democrats Return, But Not Enough To End Holdout

FILE - In this July 13, 2021, file photo Texas State Rep. Senfronia Thompson, dean of the Texas House of Representatives, speaks as Democratic members of the Texas legislature hold a news conference at the Capitol in Washington. Texas Democrats are starting a second week of holing up in Washington to block new voting laws back home. More than 50 Democrats in the Texas House of Representatives had plans Monday to continue on a media blitz in the nation's capital and pressure Congress to act on federal voting rights. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

(AP) — A month long standoff by Texas Democrats who left the state to block a GOP voting bill is inching closer to ending. Several holdouts returned Monday and put Republicans on the brink of having enough lawmakers to push forward once again with an election overhaul. The Texas House of Representatives is now just five members shy of a quorum that would end what is now a 29-day stalemate. The slow return comes as Republicans in the Texas Senate are already advancing a voting bill that is similar to the one Democrats blocked last month. And in another setback for Democrats, the Texas Supreme Court on Monday rejected a lawsuit that sought to overturn Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s veto of  paychecks for more than 2,000 legislative staffers after the first walkout in May.

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