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Houston Pastors

Pastors Press Suit in Houston Clash


Houston Mayor Annise Parker spent the better part of 2014 dragging innocent pastors into court.

Now, it’s her turn. Months after the city’s local LBGT ordinance made national headlines, the church leaders who Parker targeted are fighting back with a lawsuit of their own. After the Mayor made the mistake of subpoenaing pastors’ personal emails, documents, photos, and even sermons, the “Houston Five” think it’s time their persecutor was held accountable.

Not only did Parker refuse to let the citizens of Houston decide the issue, she sabotaged the drive to put a repeal measure on the ballot — disqualifying tens of thousands of voters’ petitions in the process. Late last month, the Texas Supreme Court had plenty to say about the Mayor’s decision to unilaterally silence Houstonians.

In a huge blow to Parker and her accomplices on the city council, the court ruled, “The legislative power reserved to the people of Houston is not being honored.” By August 24, the justices ordered, Houston must either repeal the ordinance allowing men in girls’ locker rooms, showers, and bathrooms or put the issue on the November ballot. Period.

Jared Woodfill, a former county chief of the Republican Party, said what many of us had been pointing out since last year:

This is all about the mayor and her personal agenda. The actions she took were unlawful, and now the court has said the people are going to have an opportunity to vote. That’s all we’ve asked for from day one.

Now, as if that news weren’t damaging enough, Parker will have to answer for her actions in another court.

In a press conference this morning, the plaintiffs of this new suit (which includes four of the Houston Five and the Houston Pastors’ Council) are demanding justice for the Mayor’s decision to drive her radical agenda at the literal expense of these church leaders. In her reckless campaign to squash the opposition, these pastors were forced to spend more than a half million dollars defending themselves.

“The purpose of this lawsuit is not to retaliate for her wrongful behavior,” the group’s attorney told the press, “but instead is to create a deterrence to all future Mayor Parkers to let them know once and for all, if you’re going to violate rights, there will be reckoning and accountability in a court of law.”


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