After everything the GOP has done in recent years, their future plans will surprise no one.
None of what you’re about to read is hyperbole. These things will happen if the GOP wins the midterms in Texas. While I don’t mean to scare you, you should be scared.
At the end of this article, I’ll also provide ways you can stop our descent into madness.
The Texas Republican platform.
The GOP’s platform is a political guide to lawmakers and legislators on which bills to introduce, how to vote, and what ideas to push. Over the summer, the platform was widely discussed here in Texas and on national news. But, the nature of the 24-hour news cycle eventually pushed those stories to the backs of our minds. It’s important that all Texans know what will happen if Republicans win again on November 8.
- You will never again get a say in who wins statewide elections. Texas Republicans want to implement an electoral college system for statewide elections (governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, railroad commissioner, etc.), where each county votes in unison. They are doing this because 75% of the population lives in either suburban or urban areas, limited to only a few counties. With 254 counties in Texas, rural conservatives can determine who holds state office, even if they lose the popular vote. This is only one of the ways they will maintain power, despite being the minority.
- The end of local control. Over the last few years, the state legislature has jumped leaps and bounds to ensure that cities and municipalities cannot make their own laws and regulations regarding the environment, workers’ rights, budgeting, etc. Texas Republicans want to restrict local control further so that no matter what town you live in, the local body of government has no say on anything other than bonds.
- The end of minimum wage. In Texas, 40% of workers earn less than $15 an hour. Texas has long been the worst state to work in regarding pay, workers’ rights, and the right to organize. The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. If Republicans win in D.C. and Texas, that will go away. Employers will drop their pay to $5 an hour, $2 an hour, or anything they can and still find workers. This would be devastating for people in rural areas or without higher education. Poverty and homelessness in Texas would skyrocket.
Of all your jobs in your life, YOU KNOW that there are employers who would pay $2 an hour if they could.
Anyone who says that things like this can’t happen probably said the same about Roe v. Wade. But it did happen, and it can happen.
- The end of all business and professional licensing. The electrician or plumber working on your house won’t have to have a license to prove he’s trained and certified. Elevator technicians, tow truck operators, and industrial builders will all lose the requirements of proving their ability to do that type of work. It goes with the GOP’s ideas of limited government but against having a safe and functioning society.
- Repeal mandatory sick time and family leave. Some of us have worked jobs where we couldn’t afford to miss a day without the risk of unemployment. The GOP wants to make that the standard. Are you sick? You can be fired. Pregnant? You can be fired. A spouse in hospice? You can be fired.
Again, none of this is hyperbole. It’s all in the Texas Republican Party platform.
What if you work for a company that believes in equal rights or fair treatment?
- Businesses will receive hefty fines for speaking out against racism or bigotry. Suppose a company speaks out, protests, or boycotts the Texas legislature or other Texas entities against banning Black history in schools (Critical Race Theory) or in favor of the LGBTQ youth living their authentic selves. In that case, the state will implement fines and penalties.
But what about the first amendment? Greg Abbott and Ken Paxton both built their careers attacking constitutional rights. Texas Republicans are seeking to ban all “woke” businesses in Texas from operating here. All of the details are on page eight of their platform.
- Republicans want to ban all unions in the state of Texas. This includes police unions, teacher’s unions, and other collective bargaining groups. The GOP would prefer to expand the right-to-work laws.
- Privatizing Social Security is in their platform. They would rather people profit and enrich themselves than ensure our elderly population receives a stipend to cover living expenses.
Forget the environment and pollution. If Texas Republicans get their way, the climate crisis will worsen, cancer clusters will increase, and Texans will lose even more access to clean water.
- The Texas GOP favors less regulation of the grid. Reliability and skyrocketing costs aren’t as important to them as embracing the idea of free-market capitalism.
- They want to declassify carbon dioxide as a pollutant.
- They Want to increase the usage of fossil fuels. The Texas GOP’s platform explicitly states they are against environmentalism, as it interferes with private businesses. They would also like to ban all forms of renewable energy in Texas.
- Goodbye, endangered species. Republicans want to see a full repeal of the Endangered Species Act and believe people have the right to kill any animal on their property.
- The GOP plans to repeal the Environmental Protection Act when they take control in DC.
What the Texas GOP wants to do to education is worse.
Republicans will talk a lot about school choice, but those are marketing words for “segregation.”
- The GOP plans to implement school choice in Texas. What that means is they want to create a voucher system. In Texas, the cost per student (which we pay in taxes) is about $11,000 annually.
This money funds teachers, books, and all the other things involved with the student going to public school. Vouchers would allow parents to take a portion of that money and use it towards placing a child in a private school, which can cost upwards of $40,000. It will then be up to the parent to cover the remaining cost. The students in low-income areas will still have to go to public schools because their parents can’t afford the excess costs. However, those schools will lose tens of thousands of dollars in funding, which will be sent to the private schools with the students. Millions of Texas children will suffer for it.
- Republicans want Texas to be an abstinent-only-taught state. While in 2022, most Americans realize that abstinent-only programs are ineffective and unethical, Republicans would much rather see pregnant teenagers and large STD outbreaks. Studies have shown that withholding information from sexually active teens about sexual health and safety doesn’t stop teens from having sex. Rather, it increases negative outcomes.
- They want to ban all books regarding LGBTQ and Black Civil Rights. Over the last year, we’ve already seen Republicans engage in book-burning behavior. They won’t stop until legislation bans these books from schools and libraries.
If you’re wondering, we’re still talking about what the Texas GOP has in their party platform.
- The GOP would like to ban all guidance counselors in schools. They do not want Texas school children to have access to any mental health without the parent’s strict oversight.
- Public education should be more focused on the positives of free-market capitalism. Republicans intend to ban schools and teachers from teaching students about other economic systems unless that economic system is painted unfavorably.
- Any type of racial awareness should be banned. Page 16 of their platform goes into further detail about the GOP’s ideas of Critical Race Theory and how the American identity rejects the truth about American history.
- Teachers must teach creationism as a theory. They also must teach evolution as a theory. They have to give the student each perspective.
- All students must learn the humanity of the “pre-born child.” That’s right. On the Texas Republican platform, they put one of their agenda items: the religious indoctrination of public school children to believe life begins at conception.
The Texas GOP wants to turn colleges and universities into white supremacist safe-havens.
- Meritocracy and Western Civilization are the only lessons about identity higher learners should hear. Multicultural diversity and political correctness should be banned from all college campuses.
- Public funding should not be used for equity-inclusion centers or courses.
- Public universities will be required to create programs regarding free-market liberty. Otherwise, funding could be cut.
Besides wanting an uneducated and poor population, Texas Republicans would also like the people of Texas to be in bad health.
- The GOP wants to abolish the Texas Child Mental Health Care Consortium. The purpose is they don’t want any children in Texas who come from low-income families to access mental health care.
- End all government forms of welfare and substitute them with faith-based programs. Unfortunately, Catholic Charities can’t help everyone. Many people in Texas who have lived in poverty know that their funds and ability to help usually run out in the first few days of the month.
- Republicans oppose the expansion of Medicaid. It doesn’t matter to them that 6 million Texans are uninsured or that the average lifespan in Texas is shorter than in most other states. It shouldn’t surprise you that they also still support the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
According to the Texas GOP platform, homosexuality is an abnormal lifestyle.
- When SCOTUS makes gay marriage a state’s right issue, it will again be banned in Texas. They will also reimplement sodomy laws making it illegal to be LGBTQ in the state of Texas.
- Birth control will be banned under the Texas GOP’s right of conscience laws they are proposing. So will access to cancer screenings for low-income women.
- Republicans have called for a full repeal of hate-crime laws—the reason why is self-explanatory.
- The GOP embraces all forms of white supremacist symbology. They call it heritage preservation, meaning any confederate statue or name should be protected under state law. Moving a statue or renaming a bridge would erode their heritage.
All of this is only the tip of the iceberg.
The entire Texas Republican platform is online for you to read, and I strongly urge that you do. They have told us who they are again and again. It will get worse in Texas, much worse if Republicans win again.
Early voting will continue for 10 more days, and the election will be held 14 days from now. If you haven’t voted already, make a plan.
If you haven’t started relationship organizing, DO IT NOW. We need everyone to chip in. Remember, Roe v. Wade was just the beginning. They are coming after all of your rights.
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