Austin, TX, August 30, 2013 – Three more state leaders have condemned a controversial proposed ordinance in San Antonio that extends so-called non-discrimination protection to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals in a way that stifles free speech and tramples on religious liberty. State Sen. Donna Campbell, whose district includes a portion of San Antonio, State Sen. Dan Patrick, and Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples have joined a growing group of state leaders, that include U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, Attorney General Greg Abbott, and State Sen. Ken Paxton and State Rep. Dan Branch (candidates for Attorney General) in opposing the proposed ordinance.
“Any ordinance that ostracizes a majority of its citizens for their personal religious beliefs is wrong, whether you agree with those beliefs or not. It threatens our liberty and epitomizes the worst of Big Government. This ordinance doesn’t strengthen our rights as citizens. It weakens them. I share the sentiments of Attorney General Greg Abbott and others who have spoken out against this ordinance. I believe it violates the Texas Constitution, will harm families and businesses, and has unnecessarily divided our city.”
State Senator Donna Campbell
“The proposed San Antonio ordinance runs counter to the Holy Bible and the United States Constitution. I am proud to stand with the faith community leaders of San Antonio against this ordinance. I hope the San Antonio City Council considers the harm this ordinance will perpetrate on those who share my faith as well as the inevitable litigation before adopting this politically motivated measure.”
State Senator Dan Patrick, candidate for Lt. Governor
“As the Senate sponsor of the Texas Defense of Marriage Act (2005) that was adopted with 76% of the vote, I wholeheartedly oppose the proposed San Antonio ordinance. The proposal is fundamentally flawed as it clearly discriminates against those with deeply held religious views. Discrimination in any form should be rejected by all Texans, but there is a clear distinction between discrimination and a thinly veiled wholesale attack on a value system held by millions of Texans. This ordinance blatantly undermines the long held convictions of an overwhelming majority of our entire state, and the San Antonio City Council should respect the voice of millions of Texans who support traditional values.”
Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, candidate for Lt. Governor
Texas Values President Jonathan Saenz released this statement in regards to the growing outrage over the proposed ordinance:
“With this week’s disastrous City Council meeting for supporters of the ordinance, it is not surprising that more leaders are speaking up. As evidenced by the tremendous turnout at the City Council meeting on Wednesday, the people of San Antonio are outraged and want this proposal tossed out. If passed, this ordinance will be used as a weapon to silence people of faith and to punish people who hold a traditional view of marriage and sexuality. Mayor Castro and Councilman Diego Bernal should listen to the growing chorus of local, state, and national leaders opposing this unconstitutional proposal, and immediately end this embarrassment for the great city of San Antonio.”
On Wednesday of this week, the San Antonio City Council publicly discussed the ordinance for the first time, admitting that the city has no evidence of any discrimination based upon an individual’s sexual orientation and gender identity. Also revealing was City Attorney Michael Bernard’s answers to questions about the ordinance that caused more doubt and concern about the ordinance’s legal status and ability to hold up in court. Concerned citizens wearing blue swarmed the council chambers in opposition to the ordinance and for over six hours expressed serious concerns about how the ordinance would attack private businesses, stifle free speech, trample on religious liberty, and potentially create safety concerns in public-use bathrooms and changing facilities. It was clear that a super-majority of citizens were there to express concerns and stand in opposition to the ordinance.
Read Sen. Campbell’s full letter to Mayor Castro opposing the ordinance here.
See Sen. Patrick’s statement here.
See Todd Staples’ statement here.