Texas

Protests Over “Sanctuary Cities” Ban Rock Capitol On Legislative Session’s Last Day

Monday, the final day of the regular session for the Texas Legislature, was marked by protests against sanctuary cities legislation and the possibility of a special session.

Monday marked the final day of the regular session for the Texas Legislature. It was marked by protests against sanctuary cities legislation and the possibility of a special session.

Speaking at a bill signing ceremony away from the Texas State Capitol, Governor Greg Abbott said he would announce later this week whether he plans to call lawmakers back this summer for a special session, to deal with bills that failed during the regular session. Possible topics for a special session include property tax reform, regulation of bathroom use by transgender individuals, and a sunset bill to prolong the life of key government agencies.

But some at the Capitol were still looking back. Several hundred demonstrators lined all four levels of the rotunda to protest Senate Bill 4, the so-called sanctuary cities law. Members of the group also packed the House gallery, initially just to sit and watch the Memorial Day business. Then, they too began to stand up and chant, disrupting the session.

Eventually, DPS troopers escorted the demonstrators out of the gallery. But not before one member, Dallas-area Republican Matt Rinaldi, informed several of his Latino Democratic colleagues that he had called Immigrations and Customs Enforcement on the protestors. That led to a shoving match, with Rinaldi and some Democrats threatening to harm each other.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media’s business reporter, covering the oil...

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