Texas Freedom Network Vows to Hold Elected Officials Accountable, Charts Path Forward as Legislative Session Ends

May 29, 2023

CONTACT: Emily Witt, [email protected]

AUSTIN, Texas — May 29 marks the official end of the regular 88th Texas Legislative Session.

Over the weekend, a number of bills — notably one on censorship and another on the removal of public school funding — died after failing to meet crucial deadlines and therefore failed to become completed legislation.

Texas Freedom Network advocates for public education and freedom from censorship, religious freedom, LGBTQIA+ rights, and reproductive rights.

Texas Freedom Network Executive Director Val Benavidez (she/her) issued the following response​:

“We all want a Texas where our lawmakers work to help us, not harm us. I am disgusted, disappointed, and unfortunately — not shocked that our elected officials spent this session attacking our communities and stealing our freedoms. Instead of using their power to address gun violence, economic inequality, or fully funding our public schools — legislators stripped transgender youth of their healthcare, attempted to steal taxpayer dollars from our students in neighborhood schools, violated the religious freedom of Texans, targeted border and LGBTQIA+ communities, and continued to ignite culture wars that seek to divide and distract us.

“Even so, our strength and will to fight back will never be diminished. No law can ever take away the care we have for each other, the growing power of our movement, and our shared vision for a Texas where people are accepted, embraced, and safe — no matter the color of their skin, their gender identity, who they love, the zip code they grew up in, or the financial status of their family. Far-right extremists denigrate public education because they know an informed electorate will see their corruption. They target diverse communities because they know we can vote them out. They chip away at our voting rights because they’re terrified of how true democracy can eventually dissolve their hold on us.

“Elections have consequences, and so do the actions of our elected officials. We must never forget that extremist legislators are to blame for these assaults on our freedoms. When their positions hang in the balance next election, we’ll be here pushing for true legislative champions. We’ll remind Texans who fought for them and who fought against them — including our own Governor, who would be ignoring the wants of Texans and wasting our tax dollars if he chooses once again to weaponize a special session to fuel his own obsession with culture wars.”