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Last Friday, the Austin Immigrant Rights Coalition, the Border Network for Human Rights, and other partner organizations held a Reform Immigration for Texas Alliance march, in which 2,000 people came from all over Texas to march in favor of immigration reform.
As an organization blog on the event noted:
Speakers from every part of the state and across sectors of society. They were children and parents and even grandparents. They were Latino, African-American, Asian and White. Some were immigrants and others were descendants of immigrants.
Each one laid out Texans’ demands: Stop punitive and accountable enforcement in our border communities. Stop the deportations and separation of families as a down payment for reform. Create a fair pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. Keep American families together.
As coverage of the event noted, Texas Latinos are in a position to make demands. There are 4.4 million eligible Latino voters in Texas—27% of the state electorate. These voters are predicted to eventually turn Texas blue—perhaps even as soon as 2016 or 2020—and when that happens, as Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) has noted, “The Republican Party would cease to exist. We would become like the Whig Party.”
The protest on Friday included a march, rally and visits to Sens. John Cornyn and Cruz (both Republicans). The Senators were not available, but their staff eventually agreed to come down and meet with the marchers. Cornyn’s office eventually told the El Paso Times: “Sen. Cornyn stands ready to tackle immigration reform that will secure the border and fix our broken system for those who wish to come here legally.” Sounds like a lot of activists in Texas are ready to hold Cornyn and Cruz accountable.