Politics

After recklessly lifting restrictions, Texas governor falsely calls asylum-seekers COVID risk

Abbott’s Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick similarly pointed his racist finger at asylum-seeking families. Recall that Patrick at the very beginning of the pandemic had suggested that senior citizens would be willing to sacrifice themselves to save Walmart or some shit. It looks like he and Abbott are now ready to kill more Texans, and are setting the stage to blame immigrants for their deadly shenanigans: 

Sadly, none of this is new for Patrick in particular, who has a long history of this kind of immigrant-bashing. “From the beginning, Patrick staked his political fortunes on xenophobia,” the Texas Observer reported in 2019. “Way back in 2006, when he was transitioning from radio shock jock to candidate for a state Senate district in the Houston ’burbs, Patrick was busy telling audiences that immigrants are pathogenic marauders,” claiming immigrants were “bringing Third World diseases with them.” 

I mean, for years anti-immigrant Republicans have promoted this racist lie that immigrants bring disease when some Central American nations actually have better vaccination rates than the U.S. In 2021, I can’t believe we’re still debating this racist shit, especially when it’s white right-wing Republicans like Greg Abbott leading this anti-mask brigade right now! Further calling BS on Abbott is a report that he’s stalled a federal offer from the Biden administration to test migrants. Almost like he’s just more interested in blaming immigrants. Almost.

Disgraced former speaker and forgotten politician Newt Gingrich also joined in on the racism, falsely claiming that “[t]he greatest threat of a covid surge comes from Biden’s untested illegal immigrants pouring across the border. We have no way of know how many of them are bringing covid with them.” By Thursday, the tweet was gone from his feed, but it was unclear if he deleted it or it was removed by Twitter.

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“The US has more Covid cases THAN ANY OTHER COUNTRY IN THE WORLD,” Jack Herrera tweeted. “And asylum seekers are not at fault.” There was likely no preventing all of our nation’s suffering amid this pandemic, but it did not have to be this bad. Instead, nearly a year ago today, the previous president went onto television to say it would just go away. Half a million dead later, it has not gone away. On Thursday, Abbott doubled-down:

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“He knows HIS decision to end the mask mandate will cause COVID spread & death just as his premature opening did last year,” El Paso Rep. Veronica Escobar responded. “His deflecting and distracting is bad enough. But his use of xenophobic fear-mongering is vile. He knows it fuels hate crime. Shame on you @GregAbbott_TX.”




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