After Touting Texas Dem Stunt, ABC Decries Gov. Abbott Withholding Pay

On Tuesday morning, ABC News (along with CBS and NBC) celebrated Texas Democrats who decided to pull a stunt and walk out of their session to block the passage of an election integrity bill. But after praising their side for using “the one tool that they had left,” as congressional correspondent Rachel Scott put it, they weren’t amused with Republican Governor Greg Abbott saying that he’ll veto part of the budget that issued the salaries for state legislators and their staffs.

During the lead-in, sensationalist anchor David Muir suggested it was the latest “showdown over voting rights in this country” and fretted that Abbott was “vowing to still push through one of the most restrictive voting bills in the country…

Adding: “Tonight, the Governor now threatening their pay and preparing to call a legislative special session.

Scott was back again that evening and seemed to hint at a more disturbing kind of threat, warning that Abbott was “threatening Democratic lawmakers after they staged this walkout, blocking one of the most restrictive voting bills in the country.”

Only afterward did she note: “The Governor vowing to withhold the salaries of legislators and their staff, tweeting, ‘No pay for those who abandon their responsibilities.’”

ABC was known for the lack of nuance in their reporting; and in this case it was that Abbott’s idea would also effect Republicans and not just Democrats. “I will veto Article 10 of the budget passed by the legislature,” Abbott’s tweet cited. “Article 10 funds the legislative branch. No pay for those who abandon their responsibilities.”

And without any soundbites of Republicans to provide a balanced report, Scott played a clip of a Texas Democrat shrieking on CNN. “The fact that the Governor is saying that he would close down the paychecks of those who serve in the House of Representatives shows you how low he’s willing to go to wield his power,” whined Texas State Representative Nicole Collier.

Scoffing at the fact the bill increased election integrity, Scott complained that Abbott was going to call a special session to allow Texas representatives to vote on it:

Abbott also now preparing to call a special session to address a Republican-backed push for, quote, “election integrity,” potentially including parts of that bill Democrats opposed, which bans drive-through voting, restricts mail-in ballots, adding a new I.D. requirement, and pushes back early voting hours on Sunday, when many black churchgoers head to the polls.

Spreading misinformation, Scott claimed: “The bill also makes it easier for a judge to overturn an election if there are allegations.” But what she failed to share was the fact that those making allegations needed to provide evidence.

And in wrapping up the segment, Scott lauded President Biden for vowing a “fight” to get the We the People Act, a federal power grab of our election system, passed:

BIDEN: Earlier this year, the House of Representatives passed the For the People Act to protect our democracy. The Senate will take it up later this month. And I’m going to fight like heck with every tool at my disposal for its passage.

[Cuts back to live]

SCOTT: President Biden announcing today that Vice President Kamala Harris will now be leading the charge with getting voting rights legislation passed in Congress, but Democrats still face a significant challenge.

“They will need the support of at least ten Republicans in the Senate in order to get it passed,” she lamented.

ABC’s double standard and misinformation was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from Ancestry and Farmers Insurance. Their contact information is linked so you can tell them about the biased news they fund.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

ABC’s World News Tonight
June 1, 2021
6:45:11 p.m. Eastern

DAVID MUIR: Tonight, the showdown over voting rights in this country, this time in Texas. Governor Greg Abbott, tonight, vowing to still push through one of the most restrictive voting bills in the country, even after Democrats walked out, halting its passage. Tonight, the governor now threatening their pay and preparing to call a legislative special session. And late today, President Biden on protecting voting rights across this country. Here’s Rachel Scott.

[Cuts to video]

RACHEL SCOTT: Tonight, Texas Governor Greg Abbott threatening Democratic lawmakers after they staged this walkout, blocking one of the most restrictive voting bills in the country. The Governor vowing to withhold the salaries of legislators and their staff, tweeting, “No pay for those who abandon their responsibilities.”

NICOLE COLLIER (D-Texas state rep.) The fact that the Governor is saying that he would close down the paychecks of those who serve in the House of Representatives shows you how low he’s willing to go to wield his power.

SCOTT: Abbott also now preparing to call a special session to address a Republican-backed push for, quote, “election integrity,” potentially including parts of that bill Democrats opposed, which bans drive-through voting, restricts mail-in ballots, adding a new I.D. requirement, and pushes back early voting hours on Sunday, when many black churchgoers head to the polls.

The bill also makes it easier for a judge to overturn an election if there are allegations of fraud. But there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.

Later today, speaking in Tulsa, Biden ramping up the pressure on Congress.

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Earlier this year, the House of Representatives passed the For the People Act to protect our democracy. The Senate will take it up later this month. And I’m going to fight like heck with every tool at my disposal for its passage.

[Cuts back to live]

SCOTT: President Biden announcing today that Vice President Kamala Harris will now be leading the charge with getting voting rights legislation passed in Congress, but Democrats still face a significant challenge. They will need the support of at least ten Republicans in the Senate in order to get it passed. David?

MUIR: All right, Rachel Scott live up on the hill tonight. Rachel, thank you as always.

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