Take Action Newsletter: What the SOS actually said about noncitizen voting; John Cornyn’s shutdown flipflop; #TXLEGE committee assignments

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No, the Texas Secretary of State did not say that thousands of people voted illegally

bad trump tweet about noncitizen voting in tx and CA

The Texas secretary of state’s office flagged 95,000 registered voters who the state says counties should consider checking to see whether they are U.S. citizens. This set off a firestorm of misinformation from Gov. Abbott, Ken Paxton, and even Donald Trump—along with some extremely lazy stenography in the media.

Unlike our governor and president, the Texas Tribune appears to be reporting this story with accuracy and an appropriate level of skepticism. Later, NBC News wrote a good piece on Trump’s misleading tweet and the underlying facts.

Other news outlets, including the Austin American-Statesman, fell short, with click-bait headlines that parroted Trump and Abbott’s zealous interpretation.

State Rep. Rafael Anchia further clarified that, because Texas drivers licenses are valid for many years, it’s no surprise that naturalized citizens, who regularly register to vote immediately after their citizenship ceremony and later vote, might be shown as non-citizens in the DPS database.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Write Letters to the Editor to any publication that fails report this story accurately
  • Call out politicians who will try to use this data to purge voters, as we have seen in other states
    • Gov. Greg Abbott: (512) 463-1782
    • Attorney General: (Indicted) Ken Paxton: 512-463-2100
  • Follow the Texas Civil Rights Project for updates on protecting elections in Texas

Update: The Statesman changed their headline

How your voices are making a difference

  • Pelosi refused to negotiate until Donald reopened the government
  • House Dems are opening an investigation into how Jared Kushner got a White House security clearance
  • Roger Stone was indicted

Read on, Warriors!

Congress Critter of the Week: Sen. John Cornyn

Pressure works. Your calls and office visits to end the Trump Shutdown worked. Whether Big John was being entirely honest about call volume is another story, but here are two choice quotes from our senior senator, spaced eight days apart.

Jan. 16: “Not many, not many,” was his response to the Washington Post when asked how many constituent comments his staff is fielding.

Jan. 24: “We’re all hearing from our constituents who are working for no pay,” Cornyn said. “And there’s a parade of horribles of how people who are having to cope with not getting paid, and it’s not good.”

Now we need to let Cornyn know that Americans—including 35,000 federal workers in Texas—will not allow shutdowns to hold us hostage again.

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Find out which committees your rep is on

See who represents you in the Texas House and Senate

Both chambers have a variety of committees with a variety of functions. There are three types of legislative committees—substantive, select, and procedural. These committees examine policy issues and generally determine whether or not a bill will get a vote on the floor.

Central Texas Committee Members

Sen. Kirk Watson (Austin)

  • Nominations — Vice-Chair
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Higher Education

Sen. Dawn Buckingham (Lakeway)

  • Nominations — Chair
  • Criminal Justice
  • Health & Human Services
  • Higher Education

Sen. Charles Schwertner (Georgetown)

  • Intergovernmental Relations — Vice-Chair
  • Agriculture
  • Business & Commerce
  • Transportation
  • Veteran Affairs & Border Security

Sen. Judith Zaffirini (parts of Hays and Bexar counties)

  • Natural Resources & Economic Development — Vice-Chair
  • Administration
  • Business & Commerce
  • State Affairs

Rep. John Bucy

  • Culture, Recreation & Tourism
  • Elections

Rep. Sheryl Cole

  • County Affairs
  • Redistricting
  • Ways & Means

Rep. Vikki Goodwin

  • Homeland Security & Public Safety
  • Urban Affairs

Rep. Gina Hinojosa

  • Defense & Veterans’ Affairs
  • Human Services — Vice-Chair

Rep. Donna Howard

  • Appropriations
  • Higher Education
  • House Administration — Vice-Chair

Rep. Celia Israel

  • Elections
  • Homeland Security & Public Safety

Rep. Eddie Rodriguez

  • Calendars
  • State Affairs
  • Ways & Means

Rep. James Talarico

  • Juvenile Justice & Family Issues
  • Public Education

Rep. Erin Zwiener

  • Agriculture & Livestock
  • Environment Regulation

Read our TXLEGE guide to learn more about why these assignments are so important.

Bookmark Central Texas committee assignments here


Tuesday Jan. 31

Social Justice Book Club

6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Twin Oaks Branch Library, 1800 S 5th St. 512-974-9991.

The Twin Oaks Branch Library is excited to host a social justice book club! This new program series has been curated to encourage all community members to become well informed on critical issues of disparity, inequity, and difference. We hope to challenge the feelings of apathy and fear on important political issues through facilitated dialogue and a facts based approach to civic engagement.

Saturday, Feb. 2

Central Texas Legislative Town Hall

10 a.m. to noon at Westlake High School, Chap Court. 4100 Westbank Dr.

Join State Representatives Donna Howard, Celia Israel, Gina Hinojosa, John Bucy, Sheryl Cole, Erin Zwiener, and Vikki Goodwin from the Central Texas Delegation representing Hays, Travis, and Williamson counties for a town hall.

Questions? Feel free to contact Koby Ahmed.  512-463-0631.

Your Moment of Zen

Funding the Fight

We Won! … For now.

We called, visited and protested, and after 35 days Trump finally acknowledged the new reality. He can’t govern by tantrum anymore.

The government is open again and 800,000 workers are back on the job, at least for the next three weeks.

In the Trump era, the next big fight is always just around the corner, if it’s not already upon you. Indivisible Austin will help be there to lead the fight, but we REALLY DO NEED your support to be effective. Make your recurring gift today!

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1 Comment

  1. Well curated newsletter. Thank you for the information and the links included. I plan to share this with my Westside Dems group and precinct Dems.

    One comment, I recommend checking out George Lakoff’s concept of a Truth Sandwich. It is a great metaphor on how to sandwich the lie or incorrect fact between factual statements. Leading an article or statement with a negation or the lie may strengthen it in leople’s mind. I think this is especially important since Paxton and Trump got to frame the narrative first and, collectively, we are now chasing the inaccurate/vague accusation (SoS and Paxton) and the outright lie by Trump.

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