IN THE NEWS: APRIL 24, 2020
As a friend and supporter, I want to keep you updated on the work that my fellow House Democrats and I are doing in response to COVID-19.
Below are some recent news clips that may be of interest to you.
Texas House Democrats Want to Reopen Economy:
First, Abbott Must Increase
COVID-19 Testing & Expand Medicaid
KVUE / April 22, 2020
‘Texas is way behind’ | State lawmaker weighs in on lack of testing as Central Texas clinics ramp up efforts
“We have to have much more robust testing for COVID-19,” said Rep. Chris Turner (D-Texas 101). “We all want the economy reopened as quickly as possible.”
Baytown Sun / April 18, 2020San Marcos Daily Record / Texas Press Association / April 21, 2020
Governor’s Orders Move State Toward Reopening
After Abbott’s news conference, Texas House Democratic Caucus Chairman Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie, said, “We want the Texas economy to fully reopen as soon as possible, and public health experts agree that can only happen with robust testing in place. When it comes to decisions on how to defeat COVID-19, we have to continue to follow doctors’ orders.” Story also featured: The Colorado County Citizen / April 22, 2020, Kilgore News Herald / April 22, 2020
Chambers Co. unable to secure virus tests, PPE
Rep. Chris Turner (D-Grand Prairie) sits as the Chair of the Democratic Caucus and called for additional testing in the state.
“Texas continues to be in the bottom three states when it comes to COVID-19 testing per capita, and Gov. Abbott has failed to provide a clear plan for how Texas will increase testing. We have heard that there are ‘encouraging signs’ more testing is coming, but it never seems to happen. We need to dramatically increase testing right now.”
NBC DFW / April 17, 2020
State Representative Says More Coronavirus Testing is Needed Before Texas Opens Businesses
“Before we can do that we’ve got to have widespread testing available,” Texas House Democratic caucus chairman Representative Chris Turner said. “We’ve got to improve our testing capacity because we just don’t know how widespread this COVID-19 virus is in Texas.”
Fort Worth Star-Telegram / April 17, 2020
Abbott unveils guidelines to reopen Texas businesses; schools closed for academic year
“We have heard for weeks that there are ‘encouraging signs’ more testing is coming, but it never seems to happen, We need to dramatically increase testing, right now,” Rep. Chris Turner, a Democrat from Grand Prairie and chair of the House Democratic Caucus, said in a statement after Abbott’s announcement. Story also featured: MSN.com / April 17, 2020
Texas Tribune / April 17, 2020
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announces team to restart the economy, loosens some restrictions
After the news conference, state Rep. Chris Turner, the chair of the House Democratic Caucus, issued a statement saying Abbott has failed to “provide a clear plan for how Texas will increase testing.” Story also featured: Corsicana Daily Sun / April 21, 2020
Austin American Statesman / April 17, 2020
Abbott faces crosswinds as he prepares plan to reopen Texas
“The governor is the chief executive of our state. He should be guided by science and make the right decisions no matter how many different places he feels pressure from, and it’s just vitally important that whatever decisions he’s made are in in the interests of the public health and are guided by public health experts and not by ideologically driven motivations which seem to be what some of the voices are driven by that we’re hearing,” said state Rep. Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus.
Dallas Observer / April 17, 2020
With Abbott On Deck, Democrats Roll Out Their Own Conditions for Getting Texas Reopened
“Here’s our concern today: On Tuesday this week, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who, of course, is our country’s top infectious disease expert, publicly warned that the nation was not ready to ease stay-at-home orders,” said Grand Prairie Democrat Chris Turner, the head of the Texas House Democratic Caucus. “His stance has been echoed by Texas public health experts, doctors and hospital officials … The bottom line is this: Texas needs to follow doctors’ orders when it comes to fighting the coronavirus. We all want business to reopen as soon as possible, but that can only happen when it is safe to do so.”
El Paso Times / April 17, 2020
Gov. Greg Abbott to open Texas economy in stages during COVID-19 crisis
“Texas needs to follow the doctor’s orders when it comes to fighting the coronavirus. We all want business to reopen as soon as possible, but that can only happen when it is safe to do so,” state Rep. Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie, the House Democrat Caucus chair.
KVUE / April 16, 2020
Texas House Democrats call on Gov. Abbott to take action before reopening businesses
“The bottom line is this: Texas needs to follow doctor’s orders when it comes to fighting the coronavirus,” State Rep. Chris Turner (D-Grand Prairie), chair of the Texas House Democratic Caucus, said.
KXAN / Nexstar TV / April 16, 2020
Democrats, Republicans host town halls ahead of Gov. Abbott’s Friday address
“We all want businesses to be able to open…but that can only happen when it’s safe to do so. These are things that are essential that Governor Abbott has to get right before we reopen,” Rep. Turner said.
NBC DFW / April 5, 2020
Lone Star Politics
“I think there’s a lot of work yet to be done. We know that Texas does need to obtain more PPE to get out to health care providers, hospitals and first responders and we learned yesterday or last week from president Trump that there’s not much in the federal stockpile, and not much made available to states, which is a complete failure of leadership on the federal level.”
Fort Worth Star-Telegram / April 21, 2020
Texas approved to let SNAP recipients get their groceries delivered amid coronavirus
And it comes weeks after 45 state lawmakers had sent a letter to Abbott on April 3, urging him to direct HHSC to take part in the pilot program. From the Tarrant County area, Reps. Chris Turner, a Democrat from Grand Prairie, Nicole Collier, a Democrat from Fort Worth, and Ramon Romero, a Democrat from Fort Worth, signed on.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram / April 16, 2020
More delays in the Census could affect redistricting and response rates in Texas
In each of the last two decades, state lawmakers have tackled redistricting in special sessions, and Rep. Chris Turner, a Democrat from Grand Prairie and vice-chair of the House Redistricting Committee, said if need be, the legislature can adapt.
“Ultimately if that was the situation that we found ourselves in, I’m confident that legislators would step up and confront the challenge and hopefully get the people’s business done,” Turner said.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram / April 15, 2020
GOP lawmakers call on Abbott to loosen restrictions, restart economy amid coronavirus
“This is crazy and completely contrary to all guidance being provided by public health experts and medical professionals,” Turner wrote. “It’s also disgraceful that members of the Texas House are using racial, dogwhistle language like ‘Wuhan virus.’”
Austin American Statesman / April 14, 2020
Census delay may lead to Summer 2021 redistricting session
“Historically, every time new decennial census data is released, the Texas Legislature has met and made the effort to draw maps,” Turner said. “This time will be no different.”