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Texas Senators Just Spent Hours Passing A Resolution Reaffirming Their Hatred Of Same-Sex Marriage

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Texas Senators, angered they would not be able to usher any of their 20-plus anti-gay bills into law, threw a temper tantrum Wednesday night.

The Texas state legislature meets once every two years for 140 days. When their time is up, it’s up, and so lawmakers scramble at the last minute to try to pass as many bills as they can that they know will become law. 

This year, fearing a likely Supreme Court ruling in support of same-sex marriage, Texas lawmakers worked extra hard to draft, debate, lobby for, and pass almost two dozen bills aimed at harming the LGBT community. From “religious freedom” bills to adoption curtailment to protecting “ex-gay therapy,” to actually defunding same-sex marriage in the Lone Star State, Texas lawmakers earned their reputation as among America’s most anti-gay elected officials.

But a bill cannot become a law unless both the House and the Senate pass it, so lawmakers have been scrambling to coordinate which bills they could get through their respective houses. In the end, the twenty-plus anti-gay bills died.

But Texas Senators last night chose to ignore the horrific flooding that’s taken at least 20 lives, chose to ignore their state’s dismal record on child homelessness (Texas ranks 39th, with 50 being the worst), chose to ignore its high percentage of children in poverty, chose to ignore its high percentage of child food insecurity.

Instead, led by the Texas Senate GOP caucus, working late into the night the Texas Senate debated and passed a non-binding resolution attacking same-sex marriage. All 20 Republicans, and one Democrat, voted in favor of the SR1028, which passed 21-10. Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick heralded the move.

Same-sex marriage of course is prohibited by the Texas state constitution, but next month’s Supreme Court ruling may very well strike that unconstitutional law down. 

Of course, in his complete and utter ignorance and arrogance, two weeks ago on CNN Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton refused to say if Texas will obey a Supreme Court ruling supporting marriage equality.

“We affirm the preservation of the present definition of marriage as being a legal union of one man and one woman as a husband and wife, and pledge to uphold and defend this principle that is so dearly held by Texans far and wide,” the resolution reads. 

“Here we are again, discriminating against gay people,” Democratic State Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, who has a lesbian daughter, said, according to the Houston Chronicle.

The Texas Senate Republican Caucus couldn’t wait to trumpet their “victory,” and immediately sent out this tweet:

But others were appalled, and said so on Twitter:

 

Related:

Anti-Gay State Rep. Cecil Bell Thinks Texas Sovereignty Is A Thing, Totally Trumps Federal Law

David Pakman: Anti-Gay Activist Admits Her Testimony To Texas Senate Was ‘A Lie’ (Video)

TX Reps To Vote On Bill Shielding Religious Service Providers Who Put Kids Into ‘Ex-Gay’ Therapy

 

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'DEEP STATE'

Federal Agencies Tapped Phones of Portland’s Racial Justice Protestors to Prove They’re Terrorists

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Two current officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have confirmed that the DHS and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) teamed up with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) during this summer’s racial justice protests in Portland, Oregon for a covert operation focused on “extracting information from protester’s phones.”

The officials told The Nation that a DHS colleague with expertise in electronic surveillance was sent to Portland as part of “an interagency task force” using a classified cell phone cloning attack to “intercept protesters’ phone communications.”

“Cell phone cloning involves stealing a phone’s unique identifiers and copying them to another device in order to intercept the communications received by the original device,” The Nation explains. It’s a tactic conducted to better understand your target, their network and their planning. The DEA is believed to have had a “special key” to help carry out the surveillance.

While it’s unclear who specifically was targeted by the surveillance, “They were abusing people’s rights,” one official said. The DHS hasn’t responded to congressional calls to explain the program either.

The officials quoted in The Nation’s article say that colleagues from the DHS were asked to “volunteer” to participate in the program, something departments do to conduct operations outside of the department’s official and legal capacity.

The overall goal, the officials state, was to substantiate thin claims by Attorney General William Barr that Antifa (anti-fascist) activists are receiving foreign sponsorship, something that is a necessary criterion to formally designate the group as a terrorist organization, something Trump vowed to do as recently as yesterday.

Considering that the U.S. has a long history of surveilling, harassing and possibly even killing racial justice activists since before the Civil Rights era, this newest program is hardly surprising, albeit still frightening.

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'CAN'T WE END THIS ALREADY?'

“Armed Militias to Intimidate Voters”: Donald Trump Jr.’s New Ad Recruits GOP “Army” to “Secure” Election

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Donald Trump Jr.

The president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., appears in a social media video ad asking people to join an “army” to stop the “radical left” and their plan to “steal” the election. Nevermind, that Trump Sr. has already refused to ensure a peaceful transfer of power if he loses and has also said he can only lose if the vote is rigged.

Here’s the ad itself:

In the ad, Trump Jr. says:

“The radical left are laying the groundwork to steal this election from my father, President Donald Trump. They are planting stories that President Trump will have a landslide lead on election night but will lose when they finish counting the mail-in ballots. Their plan is to add millions of fraudulent ballots that can cancel your vote and overturn the election. We cannot let that happen.”

“We need every able-bodied man and woman to join Army for Trump’s election security operation at defendyourballot.com. We need you to help us watch them, not just on Election Day but also during early voting and at the counting boards. President Trump is going to win. Don’t let them steal it. Go to defendyourballot.com and enlist today.”

While the actual website DefendYourBallot.com is just a Trump campaign get out the vote effort that doesn’t actually instruct supporters to monitor polling places or post offices, one tech culture website said the “ads incite armed militias to intimidate voters.” Keep in mind, Trump Sr. has already promised to deploy thousands of law enforcement officials to polling places on Election Day, a move that will discourage voting by people with a distrust of police.

Considering the numerous armed protesters at anti-lockdown rallies during the start of the COVID-19 epidemic and Trump Sr.’s repeated lie that Democrats want to abolish the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms, it’s easy to see how Donald Jr.’s appeal could inspire right-wing gun nuts to “monitor” polling places and post offices by scaring voters, poll workers, and postal delivery people by challenging anything that looks even remotely suspicious to them.

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'AS AN AMERICAN WHO CARES DEEPLY ABOUT THE CONSTITUTION

“A Direct Attack on Millions of Americans”: Reactions to Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court Nomination

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Amy Coney Barrett

Yesterday, The New York Times announced that President Donald Trump has chosen far right-wing religious extremist, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, to be his third Supreme Court pick.

Although Trump won’t make his official announcement until 5 p.m. ET today, reactions against Barrett have already started rolling in. Here’s a growing sample voicing concern over her hypocritical and extremist positions:

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