TOP Statement on SB4

SB4

The following is a statement from Michelle Tremillo, executive director of the Texas Organizing Project, on the passage of SB4 by the Texas House on April 27, 2017:

“This morning’s vote by the Texas House is disheartening and disgraceful, and puts Texas closer to passing a show-me-your-papers law that will promote racial profiling of Latinos. The amendments added during the debate that will allow police to question the immigration status ofr children and people detained, not arrested, are especially troublesome and cruel.

“If SB4 becomes law, it will also make Texas less safe by further driving undocumented immigrants into the shadows, afraid of all interactions with police, whether they’re the victims or witnesses. It will also hurt the state’s economy by making us a target for economic boycotts and the loss of productivity that an increase in deportations this law would surely cause.

“No one except Republicans in the state’s leadership wants this racist, divisive and inhumane bill to become law; not police, not local elected officials and certainly not a majority of Texans.

“This bill, combined with the voter ID law and redistricting maps that have been repeatedly deemed to be intentionally discriminatory by federal courts, prove that our state’s legislature wants to erase and marginalize people of color. But we will not succumb to their will. We will not disappear. We will rise up. We will vote. We will claim our power. This is our Texas.

“As Martin Luther King Jr. said: “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” Justice will prevail. We will prevail.”

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Texas Organizing Project organizes Black and Brown communities in Texas’ three largest counties with the goal of transforming Texas into a state where working people of color have the power and representation they deserve. For more information, visit organizetexas.org.

TOP: “We’ve always known that Texas’ stringent ID law was discriminatory. It was written with that intent.”

Voting buttons

The following is a statement by Crystal Zermeno, director of electoral strategy for the Texas Organizing Project, in reaction to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal’s decision to strike down the Texas voting ID law:

“We’ve always known that Texas’ stringent ID law was discriminatory. It was written with that intent. In a state that regularly has the lowest voter turnout in the nation, there was no other motive for this law than to discourage even more people of color from voting. Widespread in-person voter fraud is a figment of the imagination concocted in right-wing politicians’ minds.

“It is frustrating that the courts took this long to make this decision, and even now are asking the same people who crafted this discriminatory law to find a remedy for it.

“The only solution for this made up problem is to scrap the law and focus on bringing more people to the polls.  Our remedy for Texas’ real voting problem, paltry participation, would include online and automatic voter registration, extended early voting and universal voting by mail.

“Moving people to the polls is the first step in creating a representative, responsive government that cares about growing inequality. Until then, we will continue to have a government elected by a few that serves only those few.”

Supreme Court should reject Texas’ stalling motion in Texas vs US

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The following is a statement by Danny Cendejas, TOP’s immigration campaign field director, in response to Texas Solicitor General Scott Keller’s filing a 30-day extension to respond to the Department of Justice’s appeal to the Supreme Court on the lawsuit that is blocking the implementation of President Obama’s 2014 deferred action initiatives.

“We are disappointed, but not surprised, that Texas is once again leading the effort to obstruct progress. As sure as the sun rises, we can count on our elected officials to oppose any measure that would help the workers of Texas get ahead.

“This time it’s the implementation of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, which would give nearly 700,000 Texans temporarily the freedom to work, drive and live without fear of deportation and being separated from their loved ones.

“We hope the Supreme Court rejects Texas’ stalling tactic, and promptly rules on the appeal, and lifts the injunction. Nearly 5 million people are depending on it.”