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Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

Vice President Harris on Monday applauded Texas House Democrats who fled the state in protest of Republicans' proposed voting restrictions.

Why it matters: Texas' partisan tussle represents a broader fight over voting rights taking place in state legislatures across the country, as well as in the federal government.

What she's saying: At a voting rights event in Detroit, Harris said the Democrats were "showing extraordinary courage and commitment."

  • "I applaud them standing for the rights of all Americans and all Texans to express their voice through their vote, unencumbered," Harris said. "I will say that they are leaders who are marching in the path that so many others before did, when they fought and many died for our right to vote."
  • "Fighting for the right to vote is as American as apple pie," she added.

State of play: In Texas, Republicans in both chambers have introduced bills that would ban drive-through and 24-hour voting options and expand access for partisan poll watchers, among other provisions.

  • The House is set to reconvene Tuesday morning, but with at least 51 of the 67 Democrats leaving the state for D.C., there will not be enough members present to conduct business under House rules, according to the Tribune.

Worth noting: Breaking quorum to prevent legislation from advancing is rare, and the representatives risk being arrested and forced to return to the Capitol if state Republicans ask the Texas Department of Public Safety to track them down, Axios' Jacob Knutson writes.

What to watch: In D.C., Texas Democrats plan to demand that Congress pass the For the People Act and "save our democracy," state Rep. James Talarico tweeted.

The big picture: Harris met with Texas Democrats last month after they staged a walkout to block a restrictive elections bill in the regular session, per the Tribune.

Go deeper

Texas Republicans pass new congressional maps in their favor

Photo: Matthew Busch/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Texas House voted 84-59 late Monday to approve new congressional district maps that reduce the number of districts with Black and Hispanic majorities, per the Texas Tribune.

Why it matters: The legislation comes after recent census figures found Texas' growing diverse population doesn't bode well for Republicans, who then worked to protect incumbents with the redrawn maps.

By the numbers: New state laws

Expand chart
Data: Quorum; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

States have been busy this year enacting bills focused on health, education, schools and elections, according to a recent analysis by Quorum.

Why it matters: The coronavirus pandemic has had significant impacts on health systems, schools and elections across the country — a likely contributor to the number of bills mentioning those topics.

Justice Department asks Supreme Court to block Texas abortion ban

Abortion rights activists rally at the Texas State Capitol on Sept. 11 in Austin, Texas. Photo: Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

The Justice Department on Monday asked the Supreme Court to temporarily block Texas' near-total ban on abortions while federal courts consider its constitutionality.

The big picture: The court last month allowed the ban to take effect, rejecting an emergency application by abortion-rights groups. The law bars the procedure after cardiac activity is detected, as early as six weeks into pregnancy.