From: JoAnn Fleming
Date: 10 Mar 2015

Governor Perry:

We write to express, in the strongest possible terms, our disappointment over the outcome of the regular and special sessions of the 82nd Legislature, in which every single one of the dozens of common-sense immigration reform bills died.

As you are most likely aware, the overwhelming body of polling data shows that Texans are extremely concerned about the effects of unchecked illegal immigration on our state. A recent University of Texas / Texas Tribune poll of 800 registered voters in Texas found the following:

Texas voters consider illegal immigration to be the most important problem facing the State of Texas, with the lack of border security ranking a close second.[1]

Fully 87% of Texas voters, including 71% of Hispanic voters, support the passage of a law requiring employers to verify immigration status for their employees, with 70% of Texas voters 'strongly supporting' such a law.[2]

Roughly 69% of Texas voters oppose 'sanctuary city' policies which prevent the enforcement of immigration laws.[3]
Despite an overwhelming consensus among voters on the need for urgent action on illegal immigration, the Texas State Legislature blocked all bills filed in the regular and special sessions relating to employment verification,[4] sanctuary cities, [5] cost reporting[6] state licensing,[7] or any other common-sense immigration reform policies. The vast majority of immigration-related bills filed in the State Legislature were prevented from even receiving a committee hearing, much less a floor vote.[8]

Although we do not necessarily hold you completely responsible for the inexcusable actions of the House and Senate members during the regular and special sessions, the ball is now squarely in your court. It is solely within your power as Governor to call the legislature into session and demand that they complete the important work that they promised their constituents they would do.

Further, you have the inherent power, as the Chief Executive of the State of Texas, to issue one or more executive orders[9] to address illegal immigration, if you only choose to do so. You have the inherent executive power, for example, to issue an executive order requiring the use of E-Verify for all state employees and by all state contractors, following the examples set by the governors of Florida,[10] Virginia,[11] Idaho,[12] Rhode Island[13] and Minnesota.[14]

It is a point of pride for many Texans that our Governor is receiving a great deal of attention as a potential contender for President of the United States. Your bold conservative message has clearly struck a chord within the hearts of many Americans. That said, the American people are hungry for a statesman whose bold words are followed up with bold action.

All eyes are on you, Governor. Please don't let Texas down.


JoAnn Fleming
Executive Director, Grassroots America-We The People
Chair, Texas Tea Party Caucus Advisory Committee
Tyler, Texas

Maria Martinez
Executive Director, Immigration Reform Coalition of Texas*
Houston, Texas

Katrina Pierson
Founder, Garland Tea Party
Member, Texas Tea Party Caucus Advisory Committee
Garland, Texas