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A Must-Watch: Texas Rep. Gene Wu on the Threat Posed By Texas’s Anti-Immigrant SB4 Bill

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During the debate over Texas’s SB4, arguably the most draconian anti-civil rights, anti-immigrant state bill in modern political history, Rep. Gene Wu (D-TX) delivered a powerful speech opposing the legislation. Wu, who is Chinese-American, was brought to tears as he spoke about his family’s own immigration history and described how this legislation would indiscriminately target the immigrant community in Texas. The bill has passed both chambers and is expected to be signed into law soon by its biggest backer, Governor Greg Abbott (R-TX).

Watch Rep. Wu’s speech and see key excerpts from a HuffPost piece highlighting Wu’s speech below:

Rep. Gene Wu (D-TX), who’s Chinese-American, addressed the state’s House of Representatives last Wednesday during a debate about Senate Bill 4. The bill, which was approved by the House the next day, would force law enforcement officials to cooperate with deportation efforts by threatening jail time among other punishments. It would also allow police to question the immigration status of anyone they stop, including children.

Wu broke down in tears during his remarks, explaining his reasons for opposing the bill as well as why the issue hits home for him.

‘This topic is painful for me because I am an immigrant. My parents are immigrants. I represent a district filled with immigrants,’ Wu, who represents District 137, tearfully said. ‘Some are here as refugees, some are here as citizens, some are here without papers. But they are all my people.’ […]

Wu has since released a statement on the passage of the bill, further stressing his opposition. He argued that the legislation wouldn’t just target criminals, but also children, victims of crimes and those who have served in the armed forces. The representative also described his personal fears on the subject and said that the bill would be a reminder to his sons ‘that the law will treat them with suspicion,’ concluding with his disappointment over the issue.”

Rep. Wu’s powerful testimony in opposition to SB4 was followed by an op-ed published in the Dallas Morning News last Friday written by Texas police chiefs David Pughes (Dallas) and Art Acevedo (Houston) with support from other Major Cities Chiefs in Texas highlighting that the legislation will harm, not help, public safety in the state.