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TEXAS HOUSE TO TAKE UP INDIANA-STYLE BILL SUBVERTING POTENTIAL SUPREME COURT RULING ON MARRIAGE 

HB 4105 Would Put Texas on Collision Course with Freedom, Lead to National Uproar Similar to What Happened in Indiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 7, 2015

Civil liberties and LGBT rights organizations today joined in warning the Texas House of Representatives against passage next week of legislation intended to subvert a potential U.S. Supreme Court ruling on marriage and lock in discrimination against gay and lesbian families.

HB 4105 by state Rep. Cecil Bell, R-Magnolia, is set for debate and a vote on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives on Tuesday, May 12.

The bill would prohibit local and state officials from granting, enforcing or recognizing marriage licenses for gay and lesbian couples, and it bans public funding from being used to do so. The bill’s supporters have said their goal is to defy a potential Supreme Court ruling striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

HB 4105 is one of more than 20 proposed bills in the Texas Legislature that would enshrine in state law discrimination against gay and transgender Texans.

Chuck Smith,… Read More

NEW POLL SHOWS LONG LIST OF PROPOSED TEXAS BILLS PROMOTING ANTI-LGBT DISCRIMINATION CONTRADICTS WHAT VOTERS WANT

Large Majority of Likely Voters in Texas Support Protecting Gay and Transgender Texans from Discrimination, Reject Using Religion to Discriminate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 6, 2015

A new poll shows that the more than 20 bills filed in the Legislature that promote discrimination against gay and transgender people don’t reflect the values of a large majority of Texans, the president of the Texas Freedom Network said.

“These poll results should serve as a wake up call for those who think promoting discrimination is a good political strategy in Texas,” Miller said. “Passing these bills wouldn’t just damage our state’s national reputation and bring to Texas the same condemnation from business and the rest of the country that we saw with similar legislation in Indiana. We also know now that these bills contradict the values of a large majority of Texas voters, who think discrimination against people because of who they are and whom they love is just plain wrong.”

Bills filed in the Legislature this year appear to be part of a strategy to subvert a potential… Read More

CIVIL LIBERTIES GROUPS RAISE THE ALARM ON ANTI-LGBT BILLS IN TEXAS 

Texas Pioneering Strategy to Subvert Supreme Court Ruling, Enshrine Discrimination in Law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 29, 2015

Civil liberties groups warned today that Texas lawmakers are leading the way on a strategy to subvert a potential Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage and enshrine discrimination against gay and transgender people in state law.

Bills now moving in the Texas Legislature go far beyond discriminatory bills that sparked uproar recently in Indiana and Arkansas, said Terri Burke, executive director of the ACLU of Texas.

“Under the guise of protecting religious liberty, Texas lawmakers are pioneering an aggressive strategy for preserving the right to discriminate against gay and transgender families no matter what the Supreme Court says about marriage,” Burke said. “The bills that are the foundation of this strategy are gaining traction and together are much worse than what we have seen elsewhere.”

Two such bills have already received the approval of House committees and await floor votes.

HB 4105 would bar public funding to license or recognize the marriages of gay and lesbian couples, even if the… Read More

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK PRESS STATEMENT ON HOUSE COMMITTEE PASSAGE OF HB 4105

TFN President: Texas Would Be Constitutionally Bound by Supreme Court Ruling on Marriage, Regardless of Legislative Action 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 22, 2015

The following is a statement from Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller following today’s approval of HB 4105 by the Texas House State Affairs Committee. HB 4105 is designed to subvert a potential U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. It would bar public funding for, and bar state and local officials from, licensing or recognizing same-sex marriages in any way, regardless of the Supreme Court’s ruling. Miller said:

“No one should be fooled into thinking that Texas isn’t constitutionally bound by rulings from the U.S. Supreme Court. Rulings decades ago striking down school segregation and the ban on interracial marriage should be evidence enough. So this bill really represents a legislative temper tantrum that would lead to costly lawsuits the state would almost certainly lose. And it would thrill people in Indiana who could finally point to another state as the poster child for passing laws that discriminate against people because of who they… Read More

NEW TEXAS ‘RELIGIOUS REFUSALS’ BILL OPENS DOOR TO DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH CARE, SOCIAL SERVICES AND MORE

Leading Texas Religious Liberties Groups Unite on Initiative Opposing HB 3567 and Other Bills That Allow Using Religion to Discriminate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 22, 2015

A bill under consideration in the Texas House State Affairs Committee today would give religiously affiliated entities like hospitals and child welfare organizations authority to discriminate against almost any Texas family, two of the state’s leading religious liberties organizations warn.

“This is yet another example of an ill-conceived bill that pretends to protect religious freedom but in truth opens the doors to real harm,” said Kathy Miller, president of the Texas Freedom Network. “And it invites to Texas the same uproar and condemnation we’ve seen with similar bills in Indiana and other states.”

Supporters portray House Bill 3567 by state Rep. Scott Sanford, R-McKinney, as simply protecting clergy from performing marriages that conflict with their religious beliefs. But the Constitution and Texas law already provide that protection, said Rebecca Robertson, legal and policy director for the ACLU of Texas.

“More troubling is that this bill goes much further,” Robertson said. “It would allow any religiously affiliated entity… Read More

Tx Freedom Network

Next Wednesday: Texas Clergy Against Discrimination bit.ly/2plXPcu #txlege pic.twitter.com/2nqQ…

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