The Texas Hammer
Life under attack by our state government
Greg Abbott's convictions were clear as day. "Texas will hammer Travis County," the governor tweeted on Feb. 2, just two weeks after our recently sworn-in Sheriff Sally Hernandez let it be known that her office would not comply with some detention requests from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Just one day prior to his tweet, Abbott had cut $1.8 million in state funding from Travis County because of Hernandez's change in policy (see "Immigration and Sanctuary Cities"), and in the week before had begun lobbying for a bill that would remove noncomplying elected officials from office. The party of local control was going to war with a sheriff who made a decision based on what would benefit the people within her purview.
If that sounds crazy, it actually isn't. In Texas, state-level lawmakers have targeted city and county officials for what seems like ages. Name a progressive ideal a city stands for, you can bet there's a bill down at the Capitol that would negate it. What follows are 11 instances where the state Legislature can't seem to steer clear of Austin's business.