© 2020 Texas Public Radio
Real. Reliable. Texas Public Radio.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Texas Nationalists To Lawmakers: Let The Voters Decide On Secession

As lawmakers gaveled into session on Tuesday, a group known as the Texas Nationalists gathered peacefully outside the state capitol building.

Cary Wise, an active member of the group in his hometown near Beaumont, traveled with dozens of other people who want Texas to become an independent nation.

They feel government has gotten too big so Wise and fellow Texas Nationalists would like lawmakers to craft a bill that would put a secession option before voters.

While lawmakers gathered inside the Capitol, some assembled outside in support of a bill that would make Texas an independent nation.

"I'm tired of big government and I don't feel that the big government represents me the way that they should,” said Julie Walker, who came with her sister-in-law to the rally.

She and her family believe the movement is gaining momentum, but it still may be in its infancy.

“It's kind of hard to find people sometimes that are willing stand up for what they believe in,” she said.

“And that's what we're doing, we're rallying the troops to get more people involved,” chimed Susie Nelson.

Wise thinks Texas independence is inevitable and says the country's $20 trillion deficit is unsustainable -- and it will take Texas with it.

"We choose not to let that happen, so I think eventually it will happen and I think sooner than later,” he said.

House Speaker Joe Straus acknowledged the movement during his speech to lawmakers, but he didn't exactly favor the notion of secession.

"Our economy is so vast and diverse that if Texas were its own country - and y'all don't worry, that isn't something we're going to do this session,” he said to a room full of laughter. “But if it were, we would have the 14th largest economy in the world."

Wise thinks the alphabet soup of organizations in government is a waste of taxpayer money. He and others think Texas would be just fine on its own.