|Tom DeLay- Corporate Whore|
WASHINGTON, DC -- House Democratic Caucus Chairman Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Democratic Caucus Vice Chairman James E. Clyburn (D-SC), Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD), and Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chairman Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX) today sent the following letter to House Republican Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) demanding an apology for his recent remarks attacking African-Americans and Hispanics opposed to his re-districting plans for Texas:
April 25, 2003
The Honorable Tom DeLay (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives
H-107, The Capitol
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Congressman DeLay:
We are writing to express our outrage over your recent comments accusing minority State Legislators and community organizations in Texas of not representing their constituents. Such accusations are preposterous, and on behalf of those very constituents, we demand an apology for your reckless and partisan jabs at minority representatives.
Such arrogance is offensive not only to us, but also to the Hispanic and African-American constituents we represent across this country. What makes you think that you know better than we do what’s in the best interest of our constituents? On issues of great importance to our communities – civil rights, health care, education, economic opportunity – your voting record suggests quite the opposite. According to the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda vote ratings, you supported Hispanics on their issues only 7% of the time; and according to the NAACP vote ratings, you supported African-Americans on their issues only 21% of the time. Compare those numbers to the 80% and 82% ratings of Democratic Members of the Texas Delegation, and it becomes very clear who is really fighting for the best interests of Hispanics and African-Americans.
Furthermore, you have criticized African-American and Hispanic leaders in the Texas State Legislature for failing to support a proposal that they have not even seen, much less been consulted on. We have worked too long to earn fundamental rights and respect to have you come to the Texas legislature and say the Chairmen of the Legislative Black Caucus and Mexican American Legislative Caucus are not representing “their people”. We don’t appreciate this paternalism. It seems to us that if you are truly interested in doing what’s best for minority communities in Texas, you would at least consult with minority leaders in the body responsible for considering such a proposal.
Your efforts to disguise your own highly partisan land grab as a new-found concern for minority representation is completely transparent, and makes your accusations against minority organizations and elected representatives even more outrageous. It is clear that your goal in reopening redistricting in Texas is to reduce the number of voices advocating the interests of minority constituencies, not expand them. This partisan assault on minority voters should stop, and we demand an apology for your insensitive comments and accusations. Minorities in the State of Texas, and indeed, throughout the United States, deserve nothing less.
Chairman, House Democratic Caucus
James E. Clyburn
Vice Chair, House Democratic Caucus
Chairman, Congressional Hispanic Caucus
Chairman, Congressional Black Caucus
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