The National Tequila Party Movement is based out of Arizona — immigration ground zero, however, when the tequila party stopped in Kansas during the tour, they were not allowed to speak about immigration. See video here.
When the Tequila Party came to town last month, the goal was to register Latino voters and teach about immigration. “We needed to raise the spirits of the Latin people,” said Tequila Party President DeeDee Garcia Blase. But that didn’t exactly happen. Staff members at Nomar didn’t want immigration discussed. “This is the number one issue and it’s directly personal to our culture, yet we could not talk about that at Nomar plaza,” Garcia Blase said.
Garcia Blase says the decision violated her right to free speech and she filed a complaint with the ACLU. “I don’t think the taxpayer would appreciate the management violating rights that are sacred to American citizens,”she said. The ACLU is now looking into the issue, as they do every complaint. But a decision has not been made yet whether to pursue the case.
While taxpayers helped pay for the plaza, it’s not exactly public property. The Nomar CDC leased it from the City of Wichita. “Once you have a lease, they have control of the property. That decision was theirs and we could not interfere,” said Wichita attorney Gary Rebenstdorf. Technically in the lease agreement with the city, immigration could have been discussed at the plaza. The only limits on speech in the lease are political issues facing the city council and immigration is not one of those issues. Rebenstdorf says it was up to Nomar but they could have asked the city for its opinion or allowed the immigration talk to happen.
See video here.