A North Texas county has appealed to the state attorney general to hide elected Democrats’ communications sought by an open records request. This request was sent after it was revealed that the county’s two Democrat commissioners helped organize radical left-wing protests against enforcing immigration laws.
On June 16, Tarrant County’s commissioners renewed for another year an agreement with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to check the immigration status of those brought to the county jail.
The program is designed to “identify and process removable aliens with criminal or pending criminal charges who are arrested” by state or local law enforcement. Local authorities check the immigration status of inmates who have committed a Class B misdemeanor or a higher offense after they have been booked into jail.
The renewal passed along partisan lines, with Republicans Glen Whitley, Gary Fickes, and J.D. Johnson voting “yes,” and Democrats Roy Brooks and Devan Allen voting “no.”
Allen defeated incumbent Republican Andy Nguyen in 2018.
As they did last year, left-wing Democrat organizations like “ICE Out of Tarrant” showed up and spoke against renewing the agreement. During that commissioners court meeting, one of the left-wing activists revealed that—instead of being an organic uprising against enforcing American immigration law—Democrats Brooks and Allen had been involved in turning out the protesters.
“I would personally like to thank Commissioners Allen and Brooks for helping organize this,” one of the speakers for ICE Out of Tarrant said that day to commissioners.
In order to determine the commissioners’ level of involvement, Texas Scorecard sent an open records request seeking “records corresponding to communications in the possession of Commissioners Devan Allen and Roy Brooks” containing key words such as:
- ICE Out of Tarrant
- United Fort Worth (a member of the same leftist coalition ICE Out of Tarrant is a part of)
- Sheriff Bill Waybourn
Also included in the request were key words referring directly to the federal program checking inmates’ immigration status. The specified time frame is from March 1, 2020 to present.
Yesterday, Texas Scorecard received a response proving both commissioners have communications that contain these key words.
The Tarrant County district attorney’s office is appealing to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, saying they believe state law allows “a portion of the information sought may be exempt from public disclosure.”
On or before July 8, they will submit further arguments to the attorney general about why the information should be withheld.
The public should wonder what is in these communications that elected officials don’t want them to see.
Concerned voters may contact Commissioners Brooks and Allen.