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‘Advanced technology’ Scientist calculates how fast UFOs filmed by US Navy really are

Alien or not, UFOs are zipping around in our skies and the US government has acknowledged as much. On June 25, the US Pentagon published the findings of its investigation into more than 100 unidentified aerial phenomena or UAPs – military jargon for UFOs. Many of these UFO sightings were made by US military personnel and have been leaked to the internet over the years.

One such sighting saw the light of day in 2016 and was only acknowledged by the Pentagon last year.

The video appeared to show US Navy pilots chasing down a “strange craft” off the US East Coast.

A pilot can be heard in the video yelling out: “What the f*** is that thing?”

The UFO stood out for its bizarre flight patterns, “glowing aura” and seeming disregard for the laws of physics.

Pilot Chad Underwood, who recorded the encounter from his Navy F-18 fighter jet, dubbed the UFO ‘Tic Tac’.

He went on record and said it was unlike anything he has ever seen in his life.

READ MORE: Pentagon can’t rule out alien ETs and neither should you

In 2019, the pilot told New York Magazine’s Intelligencer: “It was just behaving in ways that aren’t physically normal. That’s what caught my eye.

“Because, aircraft, whether they’re manned or unmanned, still have to obey the laws of physics.

“They have to have some source of lift, some source of propulsion.”

The Tic Tac, as far as he could tell, did none of that and soared from altitudes of many thousands of feet to just a few hundred “in like seconds”, which the pilot argued “is not possible”.

But Tic Tac is not the only UFO that has defied all conventions – it is one of many objects reported and recorded over the years.

To better understand just how truly incredible these objects are, a team of scientists has devised a tool calculating their speeds.

The so-called UFO Travel Calculator calculates UFO speeds by applying engineering and aeronautical principles to what very well may be “advanced technology”.

Hosted on the Omni Calculator Project, creator and mechanical engineer Rahul Singh Dhari told Express.co.uk many of these UFOs’ characteristics could not be replicated by our modern-day technology.

This does not mean the UFOs are alien; after all the Pentagon’s report found at least one sighting could be explained by a balloon.

However, Mr Dhari thinks UFOs can be taken much more seriously if we look at them through the lens of science and engineering.

He said: “This calculator considers the UFOs as flying objects of some advanced technology and takes it on from a design engineering perspective.

“Like with our modern aircraft, I have tried to design them from essential variables – like wing loading and thrust to weight ratio.

“Based on those parameters and certain assumptions, we can try to estimate their speeds.”

You can visit the UFO Travel Calculator here, to see for yourself how fast these objects travel.

Using the tool, you can pit one of many known UFO types against conventional propulsion systems like the RD-0146 rocket engine.

The flying saucer-shaped Tic Tac, for instance, is estimated to weigh more than 47,000 pounds (21,320kg) with a span of 44.6ft (13.6m).

Armed with a single engine of unknown origin, the spacecraft could hit speeds of more than 11,800mph.

At such speeds, a journey between London and San Francisco – 5,351 miles – would only last 27 minutes.

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For comparison, a regular passenger jet would take just under 11 hours to cover the trip.

A triangular-shaped UFO armed with a single mystery engine, on the other hand, is estimated to reach top speeds of 5,196mph.

This type of UFO would take approximately one hour to fly from London to San Francisco – 91 percent less time than a regular jet.

Mr Dhari created the UFO Travel Calculator with his colleague, mathematician Dr Anna Sczepanek.

A key takeaway from the project is that it would be nigh impossible to recreate these mystery craft and propulsion systems using the technology at our disposal.

According to Mr Dhari, there are “several reasons” such as health and safety as well the lack of powerful and sustainable engines.

He said: “I think the cost to develop and build something is steep given it needs a lot of new technologies from structural safety and propulsion standpoint – especially from a travel flights perspective: Imagine flying a much faster Concorde.

“The environmental impact also needs to be evaluated: the climate crisis becomes a massive factor before any project like this even takes off the drawing board.”

As far as the Pentagon report is concerned, Mr Dhari said it is was groundbreaking to see it published.

The publically released report only contained nine pages of a much more detailed and classified document.

But its arrival earlier this year was seen as a very big deal by people involved with the UFO community.

Even if the US intelligence agencies did not reveal the existence of aliens, some experts think it is telling they have not ruled it out either.

Mr Dhari and his colleagues, meanwhile, see the report as a good source of information and data for future research.

He said: “I find it intriguing to know what might come out of it.”

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This post originally posted here Daily Express :: Weird Feed

Video Analytics Market Worth $13,001.7 Million at 21.3% CAGR; Industry Giants Such as IBM and Cisco to Ramp up Investments to Develop Advanced Data-driven Video Solutions: Fortune Business Insights™

List of the Companies Profiled in the Market: Viseum International (Potters Bar, England), AllGoVision (Karnataka, India), Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. (Shenzhen, China), Agent VI (New York, United States), Gorilla Technology Group (Taipei, Taiwan), Cisco Systems, Inc. (California, United States), IBM Corporation (New York, United States), Kiwisecurity (Vienna, Austria), Axis Communications AB (Lund, Sweden), Robert Bosch GmbH (Stuttgart, Germany), Honeywell International Inc. (Charlotte, United States), Motorola Solutions, Inc. (Avigilon Corporation) (Illinois, United States), ULTINOUS Zrt. (Budapest, Hungary) Viseum International (Potters Bar, England), AllGoVision (Karnataka, India), Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. (Shenzhen, China), Agent VI (New York, United States), Gorilla Technology Group (Taipei, Taiwan),

/EIN News/ — Pune, India, July 08, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The global video analytics market size is projected to reach USD 13,001.7 million by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 21.3% during the forecast period. Development and introduction of video analytics to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic is emerging as a major game-changer for this market, observes Fortune Business Insights™ in its report, titled “Video Analytics Market Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Component (Solutions, Services), By Application (Crowd Management, Facial Recognition, Intrusion Detection, License Plate Recognition, Motion Detection, and Others), By End-user (BFSI, City Surveillance, Critical Infrastructure, Education, Government, Retail, Transportation, and Others), and Regional Forecast, 2020-2027”. With coronavirus cases refusing to abate, several tech companies are seizing this opportunity to create and launch smart analytics solutions to augment governments’ capacities to battle the pandemic.

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For example, in August 2020, AllGoVision Technologies launched AllSafe, a video analytics suite developed by the company to enhance safety and security of people in offices and public areas, having features such as No-Mask Detection and Contact Tracing. Facial recognition specialists such as Herta are releasing advanced video analytics, especially for airlines, to identify people even when they are wearing masks. In December 2020, Johnson Controls and Microsoft announced the integration of the OpenBlue Digital Twin and the Azure Digital Twin platforms that will leverage video analytic technologies to enable companies to efficiently implement COVID safety measures and maximize digital space. These are a few examples of market players utilizing the innovation opportunities thrown up by the COVID-19 pandemic, which are benefiting this market.

As per the report, the global market value in 2019 stood at USD 2,896.0 million in 2019. The salient features of the report include:

  • Microscopic assessment of the trends, drivers, and restraints influencing market growth;
  • Comprehensive analysis of the regional developments impacting the market;
  • Actionable research into the key players’ profiles and their strategies; and
  • Holistic study of all market segments.

List of Key Companies Profiled in the Video Analytics Market Report:

  • Viseum International (Potters Bar, England)
  • AllGoVision (Karnataka, India)
  • Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.  (Shenzhen, China)
  • Agent VI (New York, United States)
  • Gorilla Technology Group (Taipei, Taiwan)
  • Cisco Systems, Inc. (California, United States)
  • IBM Corporation (New York, United States)
  • Kiwisecurity (Vienna, Austria)
  • Axis Communications AB (Lund, Sweden)
  • Robert Bosch GmbH (Stuttgart, Germany)
  • Honeywell International Inc.  (Charlotte, United States)
  • Motorola Solutions, Inc. (Avigilon Corporation) (Illinois, United States)
  • ULTINOUS Zrt. (Budapest, Hungary)

Driving Factor

Expanding Utilization of AI-based Video Analytics by Governments to Feed Market Growth

The proliferation of artificial intelligence (AI) and related technologies in administrative, public safety, and law enforcement domains is emerging as a major driving force for the video analytics market growth. Governments in several countries are actively deploying AI-powered video analytics and facial recognition solutions to conduct efficient surveillance of citizens, public infrastructures and spaces, and improve the quality of governance. According to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s AI Global Surveillance (AIGS) Index, 75 out of 176 countries worldwide are actively using AI for surveillance activities, including smart policing, facial recognition, and smart city development. The AIGS further reveals that 51% of the liberal advanced democracies and a large chunk of full democracies extensively utilize a wide range of surveillance technologies. Adoption of AI-based video analytics technologies by government agencies will prove highly beneficial for this market in the near future.

Click here to get the short-term and long-term impact of COVID-19 on this market.

Please visit: https://www.fortunebusinessinsights.com/industry-reports/video-analytics-market-101114

Regional Insights

North America to Spearhead the Market Backed by Rapid Uptake of Advanced Surveillance Systems

North America is envisaged to dominate the video analytics market share during the forecast period on account of the speedy adoption of AI-based video surveillance systems by government authorities in the US. Furthermore, major cities across the US have made heavy investments to deploy smart technologies such as drones and street sensors to augment safety and security of citizens. In 2019, the North America market size stood at USD 971.8 million.

In Asia Pacific, the market is expected to experience robust growth owing to the implementation of smart city projects, increasing focus on national security, and steady expansion of the retail industry. On the other hand, Europe is anticipated to generate lucrative opportunities as the advanced economies of the European Union (EU) are exploring options to develop technologies by blending analytics, energy, and mobility.

Competitive Landscape

Product Enhancement to be the Principal Focus Area for Key Players

Leading companies in this market are concentrating on enhancing their products and services with advanced features and tools to deliver superior performance for their customers. These players are focusing on developing offerings that have a broad range of applicability and can cement their position in the market.

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Industry Developments:

  • November 2020: Axis Communications announced its plans to launch the Axis Object Analytics, its smart video analytics solution that can identify and classify humans and objects as per surveillance need. The product has been designed for application in diverse spaces such as car parks and warehouses.
  • March 2020: Lanner Electronics and Gorilla Technology joined forces to release the next-gen Secure Edge AI solution that combines Gorilla’s real-time video analytics and Lanner’s intelligent edge computing platform. The solution offers AI-optimized video analytics and ensures cyber-security and data safety at the edge.

Quick Buy -Video Analytics Market:  https://www.fortunebusinessinsights.com/checkout-page/101114

Table of Content:

  • Introduction
    • Definition, By Segment
    • Research Methodology/Approach
    • Data Sources
  • Key Takeaways
  • Market Dynamics
    • Macro and Micro Economic Indicators
    • Drivers, Restraints, Opportunities and Trends
    • Impact of COVID-19
      • Short-term Impact
      • Long-term Impact
  • Competition Landscape
    • Business Strategies Adopted by Key Players
    • Consolidated SWOT Analysis of Key Players
    • PESTLE Analysis
    • Porter’s Five Force Analysis
    • Supply chain Analysis 
  • Global Referral Marketing Software Key Players Market Share Insights and Analysis, 2019
  • Key Market Insights and Strategic Recommendations
  • Primary Interviewee’s Key Responses
  • Companies Profiled (Covered for key 10 players only)
    • Overview
      • Key Management
      • Headquarters etc.
    • Offerings/Business Segments
    • Key Details (Key details are subjected to data availability in public domain and/or on paid databases)
      • Employee Size
      • Key Financials
        • Past and Current Revenue
        • Gross Margin
        • Geographical Share
        • Business Segment Share
    • Recent Developments
  • Annexure / Appendix
    • Global Market Size Estimates and Forecasts (Quantitative Data), By Segments, 2016-2027
      • By Deployment (Value)
        • Cloud
        • On-premises
      • By Enterprise Size (Value)
        • Large Enterprise
        • SMEs 
      • By End-user (Value)
        • BFSI
        • Retail
        • E-Commerce
        • Education
        • Hospitality
        • Others (Healthcare, Media & Entertainment, etc.)
      • By Region (Value)
        • North America
        • South America
        • Europe
        • Middle East & Africa
        • Asia Pacific
    • North America Market Size Estimates and Forecasts (Quantitative Data), By Segments, 2016-2027
      • By Deployment (Value)
        • Cloud
        • On-premises
      • By Enterprise Size (Value)
        • Large Enterprise
        • SMEs 
      • By End-user (Value)
        • BFSI
        • Retail
        • E-Commerce
        • Education
        • Hospitality
        • Others (Healthcare, Media & Entertainment, etc.)
      • By Country (Value)
        • United States
          • By End-user
        • Canada
          • By End-user
        • Mexico
          • By End-user

TOC Continued.

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Fatty liver disease: Stages of the disease from early signs to symptoms it has advanced

The American Liver Foundation names three types of alcoholic liver disease.

These are in order of most to least severe with several signs and symptoms indicating your stage. 

Alcoholic fatty liver disease

This disease happens when fat builds up in the liver, which causes swelling and impairs liver function.

Alcoholic fatty liver disease can occur even after a short period of heavy drinking.

Symptoms are not usually present in this stage, though the American Liver Foundation reports some may feel weak or fatigued or notice discomfort in the right upper abdomen.

With cessation of alcohol use, drinkers can usually reverse liver disease in this stage. If drinking continues, damage to the liver will not subside and will result in irreversible disease.

READ MORE: Arthritis symptoms: 15 common arthritis signs to ‘call a doctor immediately’

Author:
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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LIFE: ARNI Does Not Best Valsartan in Advanced Heart Failure

Researchers were astounded to find that in patients with advanced heart failure (HF), the angiotensin-receptor neprilysin inhibitor (ARNI) sacubitril/valsartan was not superior to valsartan for efficacy, tolerability, or safety in the LIFE trial.

Douglas Mann

Compared with patients who received valsartan, those who received sacubitril/valsartan did not have a significantly lower area under the curve (AUC) for change in levels of N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) from baseline through 24 weeks, a surrogate for reverse cardiac remodeling and the primary study endpoint.

“We were surprised and disappointed and stared at the data for a long time, partly in disbelief,” said Douglas L. Mann, MD, during a Late-Breaking Clinical Trial session at the virtual American College of Cardiology 2021 Scientific Session.

Nevertheless, “we know a lot more now about the safety and tolerability and efficacy for this remarkable class of drugs,” said Mann, Lewin Distinguished Professor of Cardiovascular Disease, Washington University, St. Louis.

Although sacubitril/valsartan was approved for patients with New York Heart Association (NYHA) class II to IV heart failure on the basis of outcomes in PARADIGM-HF, only 1% of patients in that trial had NYHA class IV heart failure, so LIFE aimed to shed light on the drug’s use in patients with advanced heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF).

Compared with patients in PARADIGM-HF, “LIFE patients were far sicker, with lower blood pressure, worse renal function, lower LVEF [left ventricular ejection fraction], more atrial fibrillation, and higher baseline NT-proBNP,” Mann pointed out. LIFE had a shorter drug run-in time with lower doses of sacubitril/valsartan, and it compared the ARNI with an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) as opposed to an angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitor (enalapril).

“The results of the LIFE trial are consistent with prior observations that as heart failure advances, chronic excessive activation of RAAS [renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system] blunts or overrides the effect of natriuretic peptides on the heart, vasculature and kidneys,” Mann concluded.

Results “Absolutely Surprising”

In a press briefing, panelist Gurusher Panjrath, MD, director of the heart failure and mechanical circulatory support program, The George Washington University Hospital, Washington, DC, said that the results were “absolutely surprising,” and not what he would have predicted. This was a very good, informative trial that raised more questions that need further investigation, he summarized.

During the Late-Breaking Clinical Trial session, panelist Nancy M. Albert, PhD, said that “since 2014, when PARADIGM-HF was stopped early, and then after FDA approval, we’ve all been excited about using sacubitril/valsartan in daily use, but we’ve had questions about how to use it in advanced heart failure, so we appreciate receiving some answers.”

“As healthcare professionals, what should we be considering when we interpret these results?” Albert, associate chief nursing officer, Office of Nursing Research and Innovation, Cleveland Clinic Health System, asked Mann.

Although the trial was not powered to say whether sacubitril/valsartan “is inferior, superior, or even the same” as valsartan for clinical outcomes in advanced heart failure, Mann said, “if you look at all the outcomes, they consistently favor treatment with valsartan.”

Planned Enrolment Cut Due to COVID

LIFE researchers screened 462 patients at 38 centers and planned to enroll 400 patients. However, because of concerns about patient safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, enrolment was suspended on March 23, 2020, at 335 patients.

Eligible patients had to have NYHA class  IV symptoms, be on or intolerant to guideline-directed medical therapy in the previous 3 months, have an LVEF of 35% or less, a BNP of at least 250 pg/mL or NT-proBNP of at least 800 pg/mL, systolic blood pressure of at least 90 mm Hg, and at least one additional objective finding of advanced heart failure.

The researchers randomized 167 patients to receive sacubitril/valsartan and 168 patients to receive valsartan for 24 weeks.

The patients had a mean age of 59 years, 27% were women, 60% were White, and mean LVEF was 20%.

After a drug run-in phase, the patients entered a 4-week dose-titration phase, followed by a 20-week maximum-tolerated dose phase.

Neither treatment decreased median NT-proBNP levels below baseline through 24 weeks.

The AUC for the proportional change in NT-proBNP levels from baseline through 24 weeks was similar for patients in the two treatment groups (P = .45).

Drug efficacy, tolerability, and safety were similar in the two groups.

Drug efficacy, defined as a composite of days alive out of hospital and free from heart failure events, was 111 days in the valsartan group and 103 days in the ARNI group (= .45).

On average, in each group, patients took 48% of the targeted drug dose, 4% had worsening renal function, and about 15% had hypotension. However, more patients in the sacubitril/valsartan group than in the valsartan group had hyperkalemia (17% vs 9%; P = .035).

A quarter of the patients in each group had premature discontinuation of the study drug, a quarter had syncope or lightheadedness, and 1% of patients in the valsartan group but none in the ARNI group had angioedema.

The risks for cardiovascular (CV) death or heart failure hospitalization, or for heart failure hospitalization alone, were not significantly different in the two groups.

Study limitations include its small size, short duration, and lack of power to detect changes in CV death or HF hospitalizations, HF hospitalizations, CV death, or all-cause death, the researchers note.

Session panelist Biykem Bozkurt, MD, PhD, professor, Medicine-Cardiology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, congratulated Mann “on this very important study that raises quite a few questions.”

She asked whether, in class IV heart failure, potentiation of peptides that are substrates for neprilysin, such as angiotensin I and endothelin, could play a role in potential adverse outcomes.

Mann replied that this might be a possible mechanism, but it’s not currently known.

“Another really interesting question is the use of enalapril versus valsartan,” he added. “I realize in overall heart failure trials we consider ARBs and ACE inhibitors to be the same,” but “I don’t know if we can say that in this particular patient population.”

The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health, with additional support from Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation through an investigator-initiated trial program. Mann discloses receiving consultant fees/honoraria from MyoKardia, Novartis, and Novo Nordisk. Panjrath discloses receiving consultant fees/honoraria from CVRx and being on a speaker’s bureau for Pfizer. Albert discloses receiving consultant fees/honoraria from Amgen, AstraZeneca, Boston Scientific, Merck, and Novartis. Bozkurt discloses receiving consultant fees/honoraria from Amgen, Relypsa/Vifor Pharma, and scPharmaceuticals; being on the data safety monitoring board for LivaNova; and having ties to Abbott Laboratories.

American College of Cardiology (ACC) 2021 Scientific Session: Session 410-12. Presented May 17, 2021.

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Author:
This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

Protesters who obstruct emergency vehicles could face felony charges in Texas

Sign up for The Brief, our daily newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most essential Texas news.

Author: Jolie McCullough
This post originally appeared on The Texas Tribune: Main Feed

Transgender students in Texas would be barred from school sports

Shawn Mulcahy
This article originally appeared on The Texas Tribune: Main Feed

Restrictions on Texas voting could tighten under Republican bill advanced by Senate committee

After more than five hours of public testimony, largely in opposition, a Texas Senate committee on Friday night advanced a wide-ranging elections bill that would further tighten the state’s already restrictive voting rules and clamp down on local efforts to make it easier to vote.

Senate Bill 7[2] — one of Texas Republicans’ priority elections bills — would limit extended early voting hours, prohibit drive-thru voting and allow partisan poll watchers to record voters who receive help filling out their ballots. It would also forbid local election officials from encouraging voters to fill out applications to vote by mail, even if they qualify.

They also would not be able to proactively send out applications to voters who do not request them — a practice that is commonly used by political parties[3]. Texans would also have to provide proof of disability to qualify for mail-in voting under the bill.

SB 7, which was offered under the banner of “election integrity,” sailed out of the Republican-dominated Senate State Affairs Committee on a party-line vote and now heads to the full Senate. The bill is a significant piece in a broader legislative effort by Texas Republicans[4] this year to enact sweeping changes to elections in the state[5] that would scale up already restrictive election rules.

In presenting the bill to the committee on Friday, Republican state Sen. Bryan Hughes[6] described the legislation as an effort to strike a balance between “maintaining fair and honest elections with the opportunity to exercise one’s right to vote.”

But the bill was met with a chorus of opposition. Advocates for people with disabilities and voting rights tagged the proof of disability requirement as harmful and potentially unlawful. The bill was also widely panned as detrimental to local efforts that would widen access to voting, particularly extended early voting hours and drive-thru voting offered in Harris County in November.

In written testimony delivered to the committee, the AARP warned the bill would result in “disproportionate and unnecessary risks of disenfranchising older voters in Texas.” The League of Women Voters raised concerns about increased barriers in urban areas home to Black and Hispanic voters and voters with disabilities. And organizations with histories of fighting unlawful voting rules, including the Texas Civil Rights Project, the NAACP and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, raised the prospect of litigation if the legislation became law.

“What this bill does, whether intentionally or not, is in several ways treats voters with disabilities differently than other voters — both in terms of having to prove their disability and not trusting the people that assist them,” said Jeff Miller, a policy specialist with Disability Rights Texas. “And that’s problematic on lots of levels, but fundamentally it violates the Americans with Disabilities Act.”

Texas voters can qualify for mail-in ballots only if they are 65 years or older, have a disability or illness, will be out of the county during the election period, or are confined in jail. The Texas election code defines disability as a “sickness or physical condition” that prevents a voter from appearing in person without the risk of “injuring the voter’s health.”

But under SB 7, voters wanting to request a ballot based on a disability would have to provide proof, including written documentation from the Social Security Administration or a doctor’s note, to qualify.

After a pandemic-era election with increased voting by mail, Republicans have partly focused on limiting a method of voting that until last year was lightly used and largely uncontroversial.

Some Texas counties, including Hidalgo County on the border, sent applications to voters 65 and older who automatically qualify. But Texas Republicans’ ire fell on Harris County when it moved to send applications to all 2.4 million registered voters in the county with instructions on how to determine if they were eligible. The Texas Supreme Court ultimately blocked that effort[7].

On Friday, Hughes also framed the legislation as a response to some local officials who he said went beyond the letter or “the spirit of the law” in 2020.

“We’re all big on local control to varying degrees, in different circumstances to let local communities adjust to their own needs,” Hughes said. “We like this approach because, again, each community varies. But we also recognize that that power — that local control, that power to decentralize — can be abused.”

The bill was originally written to limit early voting hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. That would pull back efforts like those recently adopted in Harris and Bexar counties — home to Houston and San Antonio — where voting ran until 10 p.m. for several days to accommodate people like shift workers for whom regular hours don’t work. A slightly reworked version adopted by the committee on Friday would allow for voting only between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. — a revision that would still outlaw initiatives like the day of 24-hour voting Harris County offered last November.

During the hearing, state Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, attempted to question Keith Ingram — the chief of elections at the Texas secretary of state’s office — about any evidence of increased fraud at night or a rationale for how prohibiting 24-hour voting would enhance the security of Texas elections.

Ingram, who recently told House lawmakers that “Texas had an election that was smooth and secure,” replied that the state had “very little experience with voting at night.”

“I think after a certain period people get tired and are more likely to have mistakes,” Ingram replied. “I don’t know if that is necessarily related to security, but I think that if you want to keep people in their best frame of mind for doing the activity, then you need to limit the hours in which it is happening.”

But Harris County’s election administrator Isabel Longoria defended the efforts before the committee late Friday evening, noting they were particularly successful in reaching Black and Hispanic voters who cast more than half the ballots counted at both drive-thru sites and during extended hours. Longoria also rebutted Ingram’s comments, telling lawmakers that the county staffed the 24-hour polling places without issue so voting during extended hours was carried out under the same conditions and strict state rules that exist during daytime hours.

“Voting happened at the 24th hour like it did at the first hour — exactly as the law prescribes,” Longoria said.

During her testimony, Nina Perales, MALDEF’s vice president for litigation, told lawmakers the bill would violate the federal Voting Rights Act by policing the assistance voters can get to fill out their ballots. She also raised concerns about widening access for partisan poll watchers in a way that could result in increased intimidation of Latino voters “who are the historical targets of vigilante activity at the polls in Texas.”

Her concerns focused, in part, on a provision that would allow partisan poll watchers to video record voters if they are receiving assistance the poll watcher “reasonably believes to be unlawful.”

“Only voters who receive assistance are singled out in this way by these provisions,” Perales said. “Most limited English proficient voters in Texas are Latino; many use assisters to vote and will be intimidated and deterred from voting by having poll watchers record them and stand close to them while they vote.”

Disclosure: AARP and Texas Secretary of State have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune’s journalism. Find a complete list of them here[8].

References

  1. ^ Sign up for The Brief (www.texastribune.org)
  2. ^ Senate Bill 7 (capitol.texas.gov)
  3. ^ commonly used by political parties (www.texastribune.org)
  4. ^ broader legislative effort by Texas Republicans (www.texastribune.org)
  5. ^ enact sweeping changes to elections in the state (www.texastribune.org)
  6. ^ Bryan Hughes (www.texastribune.org)
  7. ^ The Texas Supreme Court ultimately blocked that effort (www.texastribune.org)
  8. ^ list of them here (www.texastribune.org)

Alexa Ura