By Tyler Carter
Freshman state house representative Jasmine Crockett may be young in politics, but her verve is igniting voters who want to see a more progressive movement embody the political arena in Texas.
In her short time serving in District 100, Crockett has filed legislation aimed at criminal justice reform, voting rights, and economic recovery after the effects felt from the pandemic. She has filed a total of 185 bills, of which 75 she was the primary author.
Crockett has led on bills such as “Breonna’s Bill” with respect to Breonna Taylor, a young woman from Kentucky who was killed by Louisville police who entered her home during a botched raid. The bill aims to outlaw “no-knock” warrants to prevent to hopefully prevent what happened to Taylor from happening in Dallas.
Voting rights is equally important to Crockett. She designed legislation to expand access to the ballot box including online voter registration, the reinstatement of straight-ticket voting, and electoral college reform.
You may have seen Crockett and her colleagues leave for Washington D.C. this summer in protest of Senate Bill 1, which tightened state election laws, while limiting local control of elections by curbing counties’ ability to expand voting options. When asked if she and her colleagues were only delaying the inevitable approval of voting rights restrictions set to be passed by a Republican-led House, Crockett said her colleagues were doing the will of their constituents.
“I don’t represent anyone but the people of House District 100 and I can tell you in House District 100, they are so happy I got out of the state,” Crockett told MSNBC in July.
Messages poured in via email and phone calls from “all over” Crocket said, lending support to their boycott in spite of Governor Greg Abbott’s threat to arrest Democratic members of the House once they returned to Texas.
Crockett has also been on the frontline of arguments focused on abortion rights and the overarching reach the GOP has extended in placing regulations on women’s bodies.
“It’s simple for me… I’m tired of the hypocrisy and the “party of freedom” always wanting to infringe upon the basic rights that are supposed to be afforded to, ALL OF US; you know, men|women|trans|nonbinary|children|POC,” #abortionrights Crockett tweeted recently.
One of Crockett’s biggest challenges lies ahead. She announced in November her intentions to seek the 30th District House Congressional seat in Washington after Eddie Bernice Johnson decided to retire after more than three decades.
Crockett’s fervor caught Johnson’s attention and earned her an endorsement from the outgoing congresswoman, who has quite the legacy to follow up. First elected to the State House in 1972, Johnson was the first Black woman to win electoral office from Dallas and went on to be the first certified nurse elected to Congress in 1992.
“A vibrant congressional district like TX-30 needs a representative in Washington with high energy, a passion to fight for us, shrewd intelligence, leadership, and an incessant drive,” Johnson said in her endorsement of Crockett. “After proudly serving the City of Dallas and Southern sector for 30 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, I firmly believe that Texas State Representative Jasmine Crockett is just the person we need in Congress at this critical time.”
Her work caught the attention of Johnson who said she was looking for a successor who was young, a woman, and treated the position like it was a job. Jasmine is the youngest Black woman currently in the State House and would be one of the youngest in Congress.
“I have watched her work this last session in the Texas House and I didn’t know her very well, she reached out to me during the year, collaborated back and forth and when I mentioned that to her, she was a little surprised that I was thinking about her,” Johnson said in Crockett in a recent MSNBC interview with Al Sharpton. “I am very proud and I will be supporting her very strongly.”
With Congresswoman Johnson’s blessing, Crockett’s base is quickly growing. She hopes her record of representing the people will earn her the District 30 seat in Washington
next year. And considering the number of progressive challengers who have recently entered the race, she will certainly need it.
But for Crockett’s part, she seems confident.
“I’m ready, and I’m what they call battle tested for real,” Crockett said. “There’s a number of people who will most likely enter this race. There are none that I believe will enter this race that have been battle tested like I have this session.”