Common Cause Texas Demands Vote Texas PAC Stop Using Common Cause Logo on Campaign Mailers

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  • Anthony Gutierrez 512-621-9787

Statement of Anthony Gutierrez, Executive Director of Common Cause Texas

Today Common Cause sent a cease and desist letter to Vote Texas PAC, demanding that the political committee stop using the Common Cause Texas logo in their political advertising. In a recent campaign mailer opposing the Senate District 19 candidacy of Ms. Xochil Rodriguez, Vote Texas PAC used Common Cause’s logo. See the original campaign mailer in our cease and desist letter below.

For 50 years Common Cause has operated as a strictly nonpartisan nonprofit organization and has trademarked its name logo. Vote Texas PAC’s use of Common Cause’s logo infringes Common Cause’s trademark and misleads the public by implying that Common Cause opposes the candidacy of Ms. Rodriguez. As a trusted nonpartisan watchdog organization dedicated to safeguarding democracy for everyone, Common Cause has a longstanding policy of not supporting or opposing candidates for public office. Common Cause neither supports nor opposes the candidacy of Ms. Rodriguez.

Texas election law prohibits the misrepresentation of a person’s identity in political advertising. Vote Texas PAC’s placement of the Common Cause logo directly above the “paid for by” notice on its campaign mailer seemingly violates this state law prohibition by misrepresenting that Common Cause is directly associated with payment for and distribution of Vote Texas PAC’s political advertising.

In fact, Vote Texas PAC’s use of the Common Cause Texas logo was brought to our attention by a cease and desist letter we received from television station ABC KSAT 12 legal counsel mistakenly believing that Common Cause Texas paid for the mailer and unlawfully used the television station’s trademarked logo without authorization.

Texans deserve accurate information about who is trying to influence their votes on election day. Vote Texas PAC is misleading voters through its use and placement of the Common Cause Texas logo on its political advertising. On these grounds, Common Cause Texas is preparing a complaint for filing with the Texas Ethics Commission and demands that Vote Texas PAC immediately cease and desist using Common Cause’s name logo on all political advertising.

To view the cease and desist letter, click here