The Observer recaps the efforts of those who challenged the Republican-controlled Legislature.
Photos and reporting by Sam DeGrave
As far as controversial sessions go, the 85th Texas Legislature probably won’t stand above all others, but it was certainly wild and — depending on your perspective — disturbing. During the past five months, the Republican-dominated House and Senate passed a litany of bills that, if signed in their current state, will make life harder for millions of people living in Texas.
The state’s GOP leaders pushed policies targeting undocumented immigrants; women seeking abortions; same-sex couples trying to adopt; and transgender students, who already face a high risk of sexual assault and attempted suicide.
Those standing in the crosshairs pleaded, often in tears, with right-wing lawmakers, but more frequently than not their appeals were drowned out by conservative war cries. And the powerless progressives of the Texas Legislature — vastly outnumbered in both chambers — could do little to help. These photos chronicle the efforts of those who resisted and those who largely ignored them.