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Texas Senate approves eliminating straight-ticket voting

The Texas Senate has preliminarily approved a bill eliminating straight-ticket voting statewide beginning in 2020. (CBS Austin)

The Texas Senate has preliminarily approved a bill eliminating straight-ticket voting statewide beginning in 2020.

The chamber voted 20-10 to advance the measure prohibiting voters from choosing a party's full slate of candidates with just a single ballot marking, over Democratic objections.

It still needs a final Senate vote, likely coming Thursday, while the House approved a similar measure earlier this month — after hours of heated debate.

For now, Texas is one of 10 states allowing straight-ticket voting. Twelve states have scrapped it since 1994, though.

Backers say doing so forces voters to do more research on down-ballot races. Opponents note that people can still vote for all candidates from one party, but that the process will get more onerous and time-consuming, possibly adding to lines at polling places.

(Copyright 2017 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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