By Jack Fink

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Texas Republicans have denied Democrats’ accusations that their elections integrity bills are in response to former President Donald Trump losing the 2020 election.

Now, some House Republicans have filed House Bill 241, which calls for an independent third-party to conduct a forensic audit of the election results in each precinct in the Texas counties with at least 415,000 residents.

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In Washington, DC, State Representative Alex Dominguez, D-Brownsville, criticized the measure. “What this bill is trying to do is again to relitigate the 2020 election. Oddly enough, an election where their candidate won, where they maintain their hold on the Texas House and re-enforce the big lie.”

When asked if the new audit bill contradicts Republicans’ message that the election integrity bill isn’t about the 2020 election, the Chair of the Republican House Caucus, Representative Jim Murphy of Houston said, “People can file whatever bill they think is appropriate. I can say in talking to people that are working on the legislation we have in the election integrity bill, it’s informed by a number of elections, and yes, 2020 is part of that experience. But so are a whole series of other elections.”

This bill, along with the others during the special session, can’t be considered by a House committee or the full chamber as long as the House lacks a quorum.

In Houston, Governor Greg Abbott repeated that he’ll keep calling special sessions until House Democrats return to Austin.

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“It is time for the Democrats to end their partying in Washington, DC and get back to Texas,” he said.

When asked if the Democrats’ trip to Washington is a political gamble, State Representative Barbara Hawkins said, “This is serious business – it’s not a roll of the dice. “We’re not playing games here. Our quorum break was based on a methodical thought about a bad bill that not only impacts us today but way into the future. Our children and our children’s children.”

During a news conference at the Texas Capitol Wednesday, July 21, some Texas Senate Democrats called on Governor Abbott to meet with them directly about the elections integrity bill.

Lt. Governor Dan Patrick said during his own news conference that if Democrats want to discuss the legislation, they should stop using what he called “divisive rhetoric” to describe the measure.

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Governor Abbott said last week he would meet with Democrats once they returned from Washington.