The Democratic Party of Texas blasted the King Street Patriots, a local tea party group based in Houston, for inviting columnist Matthew Vadum to speak at a fundraising event. Vadum has saidthat registering poor people to vote was “antisocial and un-American”
Talking Points Memo reported in October 2010 that the Justice Department was investigating the King Street Patriots’ anti-voter fraud campaign — called “True The Vote” — after receiving a number of complaints about voter intimidation in Hispanic and African-American areas.
“It’s fitting that the group whose sole purpose is to harass and intimidate minority voters would feature a rightwing extremist who thinks poor people shouldn’t be allowed to vote,” said Texas Democratic Party Chair Boyd Richie. “But at least the King Street Patriots are finally being honest. This event serves as a gleeful admission from their group that folks who are likely to vote Democratic should be denied their fundamental right to vote.”
“Sadly, this group that’s hell bent on disenfranchising poor-folks and minorities is not an anomaly in today’s Republican Party,” he added. “Rick Perry, the head of the Republican Party in Texas, has taken the lead in disenfranchising Texans. Perry’s redistricting plan was struck down because it violates the Voting Rights Act and his voter suppression legislation has not been pre-cleared because it is designed to keep certain people from voting. The King Street Patriots and Rick Perry are two peas in a pod.”
Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry in May cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the King Street Patriots’ new headquarters and praised their president, Catherine Engelbrecht.