All but one Texas Republican present for the vote — U.S. Rep. Will Hurd, R-Helotes — voted against the measure, while Democrats were unanimous in their support.
At issue were comments in which the president said the U.S. representatives ought to "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places where they came from." The comments were universally interpreted as referring to U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.
Three of the women were born in the United States; all four are citizens.
House members passed the resolution Tuesday evening on a 240-187 vote. The measure called the comments racist and said they "have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color by saying that our fellow Americans who are immigrants, and those who may look to the President like immigrants, should ‘go back' to other countries, by referring to immigrants and asylum seekers as 'invaders,' and by saying that Members of Congress who are immigrants (or those of our colleagues who are wrongly assumed to be immigrants) do not belong in Congress or in the United States of America."
"Let me say that this is a somber moment," said U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, a Houston Democrat, on the House floor ahead of the vote. "It is not a moment I cherish."
A handful of Texas Republican members — and nearly all of the state's Democrats — condemned the president in their social media feeds in the days since Trump tweeted the comments. But in this instance, Hurd was alone in his support of the resolution.
"There is no room in America for racism, sexism, antisemitism, xenophobia and hate," Hurd said on Twitter after the vote. "I voted to condemn the President's tweets today but I hope that Speaker Pelosi also considers holding members of her own party accountable to the same degree to which she holds the President."
But other Republicans called the resolution inappropriate.
"I am tired of the constant politics of personal destruction," U.S. Rep. Randy Weber, R-Friendswood, said in a statement immediately after the vote. "Disagreeing on policy decisions does not, nor should not equate to hate speech."
U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, emailed a prepared statement to media on Wednesday.
“The President’s comments were wrong. Many of the comments made by Members of Congress are wrong,” stated Thornberry, whose district covers Cooke County. “All Americans, especially our leaders, should hold themselves to a high standard of discourse. Resolutions on the Floor of the House, however, are not the appropriate way to arbitrate between or to police inappropriate political rhetoric and the motives behind it. The nation faces many difficult challenges. Instead of focusing on messaging bills, we should focus on real solutions that move our country forward.”
Immediately after the vote, U.S. Rep. Al Green, D-Houston, took to the floor to introduce articles of impeachment against Trump. Green has frequently pushed for impeachment since Trump came to office.
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This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at https://www.texastribune.org/2019/07/16/how-texas-us-house-delegation-voted-trump-tweet-resolution/.
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