CNN host Brianna Keilar has earned quite a reputation for her no-nonsense rebukes of right-wing disinformation, and an interview this week with Republican state Senator Bryan Hughes of Texas was no exception.
Texas is just one of dozens of states where Republican legislators have introduced voter suppression bills under the guise of election security, riding momentum brought by the skepticism of the American electoral process among Republican voters.
The legislation—Senate Bill 7—proposes some of the strictest election laws in the nation that are certain to disproportionately hinder access to the ballot box among the state's Black voters. It includes the elimination of ballot drop boxes and drive-through voting, while strengthening the power of partisan poll watchers.
Earlier this week, Texas Democrats in the state House dramatically walked out of the session in order to deny the chamber a quorum, preventing the S.B. 7 from being brought to the floor. The Lone Star State's Republican Governor, Greg Abbott, has since threatened to withhold pay if the Texas Congress can't get it passed.
Keilar challenged Hughes on the need for the bill and fact-checked the falsehoods he promoted to further sow doubt in the security of American elections.
Keilar told Hughes:
"I just ask: Why is that when you only have 43 pending voter fraud charges in Texas? Only one is from 2020. You've previously misquoted that as, I think, about 400. It's really 43. Only one is from 2020 and there were 16 minor prosecutions for 2020. It was just people putting down addresses that weren't theirs."
When Hughes attempted to repeat the lie she'd just debunked, claiming there were "hundreds of open cases," Keilar shot back:
"No. There's not," she said, and the two went back and forth for a moment until Keilar said, "You may be talking about complaints, which anyone can file. There are not 'hundreds of open cases.' There are 43 pending voter fraud charges in Texas. This is according to your Republican attorney general's office. There are not hundreds, Sir."
People were thankful she didn't let Hughes' lies go unchecked.
And others joined her in calling out the Republican party's continued efforts to erode public faith in democracy.
National lawmakers are facing increased pressure to pass legislation forbidding restrictive voting bills like the Senate Bill 7.