Texas Democrats Signing Discharge Petition to Moderate Republicans: ‘Now It is Up to You’

Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Filemon Vela (D-Brownsville) and Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (D-McAllen) released the following statements announcing their decision to sign Discharge Petition No. 10, which will set up a “queen of the hill” process to consider four immigration bills. The move comes after discussions with local clergy, who have long advocated for DREAMers.

"In consultation with Dreamers and their parents, clergy, and Bishop Daniel Flores, I have decided to sign the discharge petition so that Dreamers can get the vote they are requesting. I will vote for a clean Dream Act, but not for any measure that includes border wall funding. Republican moderates claim they have the votes to move their discharge petition forward…Let’s see it,” said Rep. Vela. 

“By signing this discharge petition, I do so with the intent of giving 800,000 young people—young Americans—peace of mind and the ability to remain in the only country they call home,” Congressman Gonzalez said. “Let me be clear, I will not accept a DACA fix that includes funding for a border wall. It’s unfortunate that we are at this nexus, but the ball is now in the Republicans’ court. And as such, I ask them: ‘What will be your next move?’”

“I am encouraged by the decision of the Congressional delegation representing the Rio Grande Valley to support the discharge petition before the US House of Representatives that provides a legislative way forward to protect Dreamers. These are difficult times for DACA students, living in uncertainty and fear, and I am hopeful that the decision by our elected representatives will help move Congressional action forward. I urge leaders of both parties to act responsibly and with courage to break the current deadlock in Congress and secure a permanent Congressional solution to the plight of the Dreamers,” remarked Bishop Daniel Flores.

Executive Director of Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley, Sister Norma Pimentel, added, “I am very thankful for the brave action taken today by the Congressional delegation representing the Rio Grande Valley, which will help move forward efforts in Congress to protect Dreamers. I have been privileged to see and work alongside these remarkable young people here in the Valley. They work hard and already contribute so much to our communities. They inspire me and make our community better. We must come together and help Dreamers achieve the American Dream.”