For Immediate Release: February 26, 2015

Joel Peissig | Communications Director
[c] 1. 213. 514. 8989
[e] Press@Jill2016.com

Laredo, TX – Jill Stein concluded a weeklong Texas swing declaring “Texas is a great place for the Green Party right now. People are far more liberated than they were in 2012. The traditional allegiance to the Democratic Party is no longer constraining people.”

Stein, who announced the formation of an exploratory committee to seek the Green Party’s nomination for a 2016 presidential bid in an ABC NEWS exclusive earlier this month, was in Texas to meet with immigrant rights activists, labor groups, anti-fracking activists and local green party organizers.

After meeting with immigrant rights groups in Laredo on Wednesday to discuss border issues facing migrants during the recent Central American humanitarian crisis Stein said, “Crossing the border and fleeing economic and physical violence should not be a crime. We need to create a humane and just immigration policy. We need a permanent solution that gives immigrants the right to citizenship.”

Prior to the visit in the border town of Laredo, Dr. Stein was in Houston, Texas walking the picket line with striking United Steelworkers at an oil refinery operated by LyondellBasell Industries. While Stein advocates that we replace fossil fuels with 100% clean, renewable energy by 2030, she remains committed to protecting workers rights in all industries. Stein echoed the sentiments of The Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Service (TEJAS) in stating “if the workers in the refineries are not safe on the job, nobody is safe.”

The unlikely partnership between an environmental justice group such as TEJAS and the United Steelworkers Union representing employees at an oil refinery is one that inspires Stein who noted that, were she to run for president in 2016, her campaign would serve to lift up these voices.

Stein’s weeklong listening and speaking tour began last Friday in Denton, Texas where she was a featured speaker at the South by Southwest Ecosocialist Conference. Last year, Denton became the first city in Texas to ban the practice of Hydrofracking.

The story of Denton’s grassroots win over dirty energy is inspiring, but the powerful fossil fuel industry is already mobilizing to kill the fracking ban – and prevent others like it.

Summing up her trip, Stein said: “This week I’ve met with groups overflowing with new people and new energy attracted to the Green Party. People are fighting in their communities for what they need and they understand that if they are going to secure their water, secure their jobs, secure their rights and secure their future then we cannot be constrained by the Democratic Party telling us what we can and cannot do.”