Feeling the heat from voters, Texas House Speaker Joe Straus has taken to the airwaves making a particularly crazy claim. Straus’ latest TV ad claims he has “passed a Ban on Sanctuary Cities”[sic].
Quick, someone tell Greg Abbott! You see, the governor has – apparently falsely, according to Straus – been telling Texans as recently as last month that in 2017 the legislature needs to ban sanctuary cities.
Abbott must have missed that Straus-led ban.
Of course, Straus is lying. Flat out, bald-faced, pants-on-fire lying. Lying because he would lose votes if he told the truth.
In 2015, Straus’ team killed a ban on sanctuary cities. It was killed without ever being given a vote. In fact, it wasn’t even given a hearing. This means cities like Dallas, Austin, San Antonio and Houston can continue to be sanctuary cities.
So how can Straus make his false claim about banning sanctuary cities? During the regular session in 2011, Straus and his cartel of Democrats and liberal Republicans let conservatives pass a ban on sanctuary cities out of the House because they knew then-Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and the Democrats in the Texas Senate would never let the bill move in the upper chamber.
But when Gov. Perry later called a special session to ban sanctuary cities, and the Republican senators passed it, the House killed the measure.
In 2013, the House not only killed bills banning sanctuary cities again, the House State Affairs Committee actually passed a limited bill that would have taken certain sanctuary city policies statewide.
The sanctuary state legislation, HB 3738, was sponsored by liberal Democrat Lon Burnam and would have banned peace officers throughout Texas from inquiring about the nationality or immigration status of witnesses and victims of crimes. The bill passed out of the House State Affairs Committee with Straus lieutenants Byron Cook (R–Corsicana), Charlie Geren (R–Fort Worth), and Patricia Harless (R–Spring) voting with the Democrats on the Committee.