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Lege Week 4 Wrap-up: Anti-LGBTQ+ Tea Party Republicans have been given power
Posted on February 6, 2021 at 9:57 am

We are in week four in the 2021 Texas Legislative Session, and this is proving to be one of the most anti-LGBTQ+ legislative sessions we have seen. At least a dozen discriminatory bills have been filed that target our Texas LGBTQ+ community. 

Also, several anti-LGBTQ+ Tea Party Republicans have been given power as chairs of important committees. These lawmakers have a proven track record of attacking our community, and we are now in dangerous territory with them at the helm. They have the sole discretion on which bills move forward in the process. The sheer number of these bills and COVID-19 restrictions at the Capitol due to the pandemic will make it more difficult for us to fend off these attacks, but we can do it with your help.

We’re holding our #TXlege Town Hall on Wednesday, February 10. Join us and find out how you can get involved in our fight for equality at the Capitol.

WHAT WE’RE UP AGAINST

Just this week, the author of many anti-LGBTQ+ pieces of legislation, including last session’s notorious “Chick-fil-A bill,” and the Chair of the powerful Senate State Affairs Committee Bryan Hughes tweeted this misinformation about a bill that is targeting transgender girls participating in sports as their affirmed gender:

Along with Bryan Hughes, there is a small group of other Tea Party lawmakers who have made targeting the LGBTQ+ community their priority.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic it is disheartening to see that lawmakers would rather prioritize bathroom bill 3.0. than focus on getting our 29 million Texans vaccinated and on the economic recovery of the state. 38,000 Texans have already lost their lives!

STATE OF THE STATE

In this week’s State of the State Address, Governor Abbott listed his top priorities for the session. They are Emergency Issues, which unlike other bills, can be taken up in the first 60 days of the session. 

Gov. Abbott issued five emergencies for legislative action. Those include, in his words:

  1. Expanding rural broadband access; 
  2. Prevent local defunding of police;
  3. Bail reform; 
  4. Election integrity; and,
  5. Liability protection from COVID-related lawsuits.

Lawmakers go back to the Capitol on Tuesday. To defeat all of the negative bills this legislative session, we will need courageous folk to share their story, submit written testimony and to dispel the misinformation being spread about our community. Please connect us with any LGBTQ+ athletes, LGBTQ+ affirming coaches, parents of transgender children, and physicians (in Texas). The fight cannot be solely the responsibility of the few who continue to relive the trauma of defending their humanity at the capitol. Let’s step up and make some noise.