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.
Texas Republican Bryan Hughes, lead sponsor of the proposed restrictive voting bill, tries to claim there are "hund… https://t.co/CtyPcbWBeH— The Recount (@The Recount) 1622636126.0
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.
@brikeilarcnn gets them all the way together!! I love her! https://t.co/VtZQmHqqLi— SugarBrownWoman (@SugarBrownWoman) 1622650949.0
Who is more trustworthy, Hughes or @brikeilarcnn ? Anyone knows that Briana is 100% prepared and takes no prisoners… https://t.co/JmiR3oH2JU— Joseph Huben (@Joseph Huben) 1622647433.0
Smack Down... FORTYTHREE - https://t.co/v6sA3P3dcF— EclecticalMe /Elaine Is My Name (@EclecticalMe /Elaine Is My Name) 1622648063.0
Thank you Brianna Keilar for calling out the perpetual gaslighting BS from our Texas representatives. @brikeilarcnn… https://t.co/QfQfBWcSnd— H. Michael Karshis (@H. Michael Karshis) 1622646757.0
Thank you, @brikeilarcnn -- Glad to see journalists calling these liars out. https://t.co/eE7OHojPei— Capn Louie 🌊 (@Capn Louie 🌊) 1622640687.0
And others joined her in calling out the Republican party's continued efforts to erode public faith in democracy.
Spinning your wheels to chase down every complaint and conspiracy theory to keep the lies alive does not make them… https://t.co/IOjVEc4uKl— Paul Biedermann (@Paul Biedermann) 1622663671.0
Also, Sen. Hughes keeps pointing to courts being slow during COVID-19, which is true, but that did not stop the AG… https://t.co/6nvoZzKeRg— Taylor Goldenstein (@Taylor Goldenstein) 1622642599.0
Mr. Bryan Hughes takes his turn at the Red info spin: https://t.co/lC3FzAPD0P— KtD (@KtD) 1622645945.0
National lawmakers are facing increased pressure to pass legislation forbidding restrictive voting bills like the Senate Bill 7.