Did you hear the one about how Texas House Republicans chose to fund diversity training over border security? No, it’s a true story – not a bad joke.

During the debate on the budget in the Texas House, State Rep. Tony Dale (R–Cedar Park) offered an amendment to provide airplanes and pilots for use by DPS to help secure the border. The amendment would have allowed DPS to purchase two Pilatus aircraft, three Cessna Caravan aircraft, and two helicopters and would have provided funding for pilots to operate them in 2016 and 2017.

The funding for the airplanes would have come out of funds earmarked for the “Center for the Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities” (CEDD) within the Department of Health and Human Services. The CEDD is tasked with advising state agencies “on the implementation of cultural competency training.”

“Cultural competency training” is a code word for left-wing, “anti-racist” activism in state government. In 2012, the CEDD released a report calling for more training for state employees on “anti-racist training and principles.” The report called for training to develop “an understanding of the history of institutional racism and the impact on poor communities and communities of color.”

According to the Institute for Urban Policy Research and Analysis at UT Austin, the CEDD is the “primary mechanism for the elimination of institutional racism in Texas state agencies.”

Dale’s amendment to defund the race-agitators and fund border security was tabled by a vote of 82-62. The following Republicans representatives voted against border security:

Trent Ashby (R–Lufkin), Jimmie Don Aycock (R–Killeen), Dennis Bonnen (R–Angleton), Dustin Burrows (R–Lubbock), Travis Clardy (R–Nacogdoches), Byron Cook (R–Corsicana), Tom Craddick (R–Midland), Myra Crownover (R–Denton), Drew Darby (R–San Angelo), Sarah Davis (R–West University Place), Marsha Farney (R–Georgetown), John Frullo (R–Lubbock), Rick Galindo (R–San Antonio), Charlie Geren (R–Fort Worth), Larry Gonzales (R–Round Rock), Patricia Harless (R–Spring) Kyle Kacal (R–College Station), Ken King (R–Canadian), Susan King (R–Abilene), John Kuempel (R–Seguin), Morgan Meyer (R–Dallas), Doug Miller (R–New Braunfels), John Otto (R–Dayton), Chris Paddie (R–Marshall), Tan Parker (R–Flower Mound), Four Price (R–Amarillo), John Raney (R–College Station), J.D. Sheffield (R–Gatesville), Wayne Smith (R–Baytown), John Smithee (R–Amarillo), Ed Thompson (R–Pearland), Gary VanDeaver (R–New Boston), John Zerwas (R–Richmond).

After the vote, Bonnen, Geren, Harless, Kacal, Meyer, Parker and Smithee entered statements in the journal claiming they had intended to vote “no.”

On the campaign trail, all of the Republican representatives will talk big about wanting to secure the border. But when they had an opportunity to do something real, they voted to fund left-wing diversity training instead.

Tony McDonald

Tony McDonald serves as General Counsel to Texas Scorecard. A licensed and practicing attorney, Tony specializes in the areas of civil litigation, legislative lawyering, and non-profit regulatory compliance. Tony resides in Austin with his wife and daughter and attends St. Paul Lutheran Church.


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