August 24, 2018 Press Release

Six-Figure TV Ad Buy Launched After Voters in Rep. Sessions’ District Say He Hasn’t Done Enough on Family Separation Crisis

Equity Forward Action runs ads in Dallas calling on Sessions to hold administration accountable for crisis

08.24.18 – Today, Equity Forward Action released a TV ad, “Thousands” with a six-figure ad buy in Dallas calling on Representative Pete Sessions (TX-32) to take action and hold the Trump administration accountable for separating thousands of children from their families at the border due to its cruel and inhumane “zero tolerance” policy. To this day, hundreds of children remain separated from their families, and a U.S. District Court Judge warned that each child who is not reunified could be a “permanently orphaned child.”

Watch the ad HERE.

“Pete Sessions has failed his constituents and failed our country by not stepping up to hold the administration accountable for separating these families,” said Mary Alice Carter, Executive Director of Equity Forward Action. “With hundreds of children still without their parents, it is the job of our elected members of Congress — especially those in states along the Southern border — to help find a plan to reunify these families and hold those in power accountable for their actions.”

Pete Sessions is an immigration hardliner, supporting President Trump’s Muslim ban and border wall.  While he signed on to a letter sent to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) requesting more information on the separations, he has not conducted any meaningful oversight or held any administration officials accountable for their conduct.

This month, Equity Forward Action released a poll of Representative Pete Sessions’ constituents’ views on the Trump Administration’s child separation crisis and Congress’ role in holding the administration accountable for the policy. Sessions’ hardline views on immigration stand in sharp contrast to his constituents:   the majority of his constituents (54%) say Sessions has not done enough on the issue and nearly two-thirds of voters (64%) in the district say they want Congress to act by increasing the accountability and transparency of the agencies and officials overseeing the separated children.  

Additionally, the vast majority of voters in Sessions’ district (83%) say that the Trump Administration has a responsibility to reunite these children with their parents while over three-quarters of voters (79%) said they would have a more favorable view of their Representative if he supported legislation to increase transparency on this issue and most voters (65%) also said they would be more favorable towards him if he called for the Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement — an Office within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) which is charged with caring for the children and returning them to their parents — to testify before Congress about the reunification efforts and treatment of the children in its care. As the poll was fielded, hundreds of children separated from their families remained in ORR custody.

View the Polls & Memo HERE.

Today’s ad follows a similar campaign from Equity Forward Action calling on Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Representative Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), and Representative Leonard Lance (R-NJ) to use their authority in Congress to hold the Trump Administration accountable for the child separation crisis; all four Representatives sit on powerful committees, while McMorris Rodgers, Curbelo, and Lance all serve on committees which have the ability to exercise broad oversight of government agencies, including HHS and ORR.

About this polling

Global Strategy Group conducted a survey of 400 likely 2018 Midterm election voters in Texas’s 32nd Congressional district between July 24-27, 2018. The results of this survey have a margin of error of +/- 4.9%. Care has been taken to ensure the geographic and demographic divisions of the expected electorate are properly represented based on historical turnout.