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Biden staffers, ex-state lawmaker sue ‘Trump Train’ members in dangerous Texas highway incident

SAN MARCO, Texas — A White House staffer and former Texas state representative are among those suing several participants of a “Trump Train” that allegedly harassed a Biden campaign bus last October in Texas, claiming in a lawsuit filed Thursday that the Trump supporters engaged in coordinated, illegal political intimidation in violation of the Ku Klux Klan Act.

The complaint was filed on behalf White House staffer, David Gins; former Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis; former Biden campaign volunteer Eric Cervini; and the driver of the Biden campaign bus, Timothy Holloway. The plaintiffs wrote in their complaint filed in the Western District of Texas that on October 30, the Trump supporters “terrorized and menaced the driver and passengers on the Biden-Harris Campaign’s bus” for at least 90 minutes, forcing the bus to slow to a crawl on a major highway while swerving in front of the bus to block its path.

“They played a madcap game of highway ‘chicken,’ coming within three to four inches of the bus,” the lawsuit alleges. “They tried to run the bus off the road,” referring to the defendants.

The complaint alleges that the defendants — named as Eliazar Cisneros, Hannah Ceh, Joeylynn Mesaros, Robert Mesaros, Dolores Park, and a Jane and John Doe — conspired beforehand to surround and block the bus in violation of the Ku Klux Klan Act, passed by Congress in 1871 to prohibit the obstruction of free and fair elections via the coordinated intimidation of voters. As a result of their actions, they claim, the campaign was forced to cancel its stops in San Marcos and Austin out of fear for their safety.

CNN has reached out to the defendants in the suit. None of them have been criminally charged in the incident

According to the complaint, Gins, Davis and Holloway were on the bus at the time and Cervini was in his own car escorting them. Biden and Harris were not on the bus that day.

The complaint also draws a line between the events of that day and the January 6 riot at the Capitol. The complaint notes that some of the individuals who were involved in planning the Trump Train incident on October 30 were also in Washington the day of the deadly insurrection. The complaint also notes members of the New Braunfels Trump Train were identified in media reports and on social media has “having taken part in the January 6, 2021 insurrection.”

It is not the first time the Klan Act has been invoked this year in connection with acts carried out by Trump supporters before and after the election. Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, filed a lawsuit against Trump in February accusing him of inciting the January 6 riot and violating a provision of the Ku Klux Klan Act that prohibits political violence and intimidation that could impede federal officials from performing their constitutional duties. Jason Miller, a spokesman for Trump, said the former President did not incite or work to incite riots at the Capitol.

“Surrounded”

The FBI opened an investigation after footage of the highway confrontation, filmed by onlookers and Trump Train members themselves, emerged that on social media. An official familiar with the matter said the incident remains under investigation.

The same plaintiffs are suing San Marcos, Texas, law enforcement officials and employees in a separate lawsuit alleging that they violated another section of the Klan Act by failing to prevent or respond to the harassment.

Davis, who at the time was serving as a Biden campaign surrogate, filmed the incident from the inside of the bus.

The previously unseen footage, which was provided exclusively to CNN, shows several vehicles with Trump flags surrounding the Biden campaign bus, cutting in front of it, and abruptly braking to slow the bus down as it traveled from San Antonio to Austin for a campaign event.

Davis’ recording also shows one truck with Trump flags — allegedly driven by Cisneros — sideswiping a campaign staffer’s SUV as they accompanied the bus. “That was me slamming that f—er….Hell yea,” Cisneros later posted on Facebook.

“Though I’ve been involved in many political campaigns for myself and others over the past couple of decades, I have never before experienced the threat or fear I felt when the ‘Trump Train’ surrounded our bus,” Davis told CNN. “I’m a part of this suit because I’m worried that this sort of dangerous behavior threatens to become the new normal if we don’t stop it.”

The plaintiffs are being represented by lawyers with the nonprofit advocacy organizations Protect Democracy and the Texas Civil Rights Project, as well as the law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP. Cameron Kistler, counsel for Protect Democracy and one of the lawyers on the case, is also an expert on the KKK Act, which he has called a “potentially powerful weapon for litigators seeking to protect the integrity of federal elections.”

The complaint alleges the defendants began conspiring almost immediately after the Biden campaign’s events schedule was released.

“As soon as the Biden-Harris Campaign made plans for the Bus Tour public, members of the Alamo City and New Braunfels Trump Trains began planning to intercept and intimidate the bus as it traveled through Bexar, Comal, Hays, and Travis Counties on October 30,” the complaint reads, pointing to Facebook posts by Alamo City Trump Train members beginning on October 28.

The lawsuit also points to an October 28 video posted on Twitter by then-President Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., encouraging Trump Train members to “get together and head down to McAllen and give Kamala Harris a nice Trump Train welcome.” President Trump later tweeted out a video of the highway skirmish with the caption, “I LOVE TEXAS!”

In several cases, the participants did not hide their involvement. Many of them — including one of the defendants in the lawsuit, Hannah Ceh — live-streamed the incident on social media using the hashtag #operationblockthebus, according to screenshots included in the complaint.

Another defendant, Dolores Park, streamed two live videos to Facebook, the complaint states, where she said, “This Biden bus is surrounded! Like seriously surrounded by Trump flags!” and “If my husband sees me like this, he’s going to kill me for driving like this!”

The plaintiffs argue that, in addition to violating the Ku Klux Klan Act, the Trump Train members engaged in civil assault, “intentionally and/or knowingly” threatening the plaintiffs “with imminent bodily injury by engaging in aggressive, dangerous, and reckless driving that put Plaintiffs and others on I-35 in physical danger.”

Plaintiffs say they’ve suffered psychological harm

Gins, who now serves as deputy director for operations in the Office of the Vice President, had volunteered to work on the Biden-Harris Inaugural Committee in the runup to January 20, according to the complaint. But he backed out after the events of January 6 because of “anxiety about the security aspect,” he said in a text message at the time and wrote that he had been “a little traumatized” by the Biden campaign bus incident, according to the complaint.

“The experience of those 90 minutes on I-35 is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life,” Gins told CNN. “Elections are partisan and can get heated, but we cannot allow violence to become part of our great democracy. If you resort to violence, the law will hold you accountable for your actions.”

Holloway said that “after a long career as a bus driver, the Biden-Harris bus was the last one I ever drove.”

“I am suing because my civil rights were threatened,” he told CNN. “I don’t want other people just trying to do a job to have to fear for their lives simply because they were hired by a political campaign. As a Black man, I’m not a stranger to voter intimidation and political violence. It’s happened throughout history. It happened in Texas. It happened on January 6. We need our political leaders to take this threat seriously and help end it now. I’m doing my part with this lawsuit.”

Cervini said he received “literally thousands of threatening messages” in the days following the incident.

“It made me fear for my family’s safety, especially after I witnessed how aggressively the Trump Train went after the Biden-Harris bus, and how San Marcos law enforcement failed to come to help,” he said.

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Comments

63 Comments

        1. Wait…FUNKY narrative?? That’s Cultural Appropriation, GUEY! What do you know about FUNK? Name 3 of the FUNKIEST bands ever. I’m WAITING, pendejito.

          1. I bet you are so funky you had an Afro when you were in Viva La Raza back in the 70s.
            Play that funky music brown boy. Nitwit!

          1. Sorry they are Hispanic. Changing your narrative like a good leftist when you lose the debate. That’s why you libtards can never be taken seriously. Especially you nitwit.

  1. Puta tu Madre que te Pario, pinche, Inutil Trumptard! Quick get out your Spanish-English Dictionary!! Tio taco y Coconut!! Where did the Trumptard train get to?? NOWHERE!! It was DERAILED by THE BIDEN/HARRIS train. Ha, ha,ha! Laughing my ASS OFF!!

      1. Trump was my President in the 2017 presidential inaugural. Even though I am a Democrat I was looking forward to new and exciting things from a non politician like Trump. Hillary was just a continuation of the Clinton’s and Bushes. I was not jumping for joy that Trump had won, but I was hopeful for change and a better Anerica,as we all are at the beginning of a new presidency. But..that hope changed real quick when he began his trash talking Mexicans, Muslims and Disabled people. And all the bullshit about Mexico building a wall…and trusting Putin over American officials, that really told me what Trump was all about. I am not a raging Liberal…but Trump went overboard in his views of a Trump America. This is why I refused to call him my president. You go ahead and call Biden whatever you want…but he has done more for America in the last six months than Trump did in 4. His record speaks for itself.

        1. Wasted rant as usual. You are so full of crap it’s coming out all of your orifices. Biden has a record that speaks for itself? Where? On another planet. Name what Biden has done 5, 4, 3, 2, 1……….crickets. Trump fixed the border and your buddy Joe broke it. Tjhat’s why he is sending Harris. You are all big partisan mouth. I recall you were bashing Trump for the past 4 years non stop 24/7 and claiming he was not your President. BTW – Trump had nothing to do with your miserable life. That was your making loser.

          1. Can’t argue with a Crazy person. If you insist on it, you will be crazier than the person you are arguing with. Hope you get better as time goes bye. Time for me to have a drink of good wine and relax. Have a good night!

          2. The only person that is a psycho is you nitwit. Just reread your rants. Too funny. Enjoy tweaking your meth nitwit. So easy to destroy your narrative and make you give up. LMAO.

          3. I see you couldn’t name any of dementia Joe’s accomplishments the past 6 months. His first 100 days was a trainwreck and it continues.

        2. You are just a liar like charlie liar doo doo. You are a marxist willing to kill millions of people just to satisfy your decrepit ego. Damn tranny.

    1. BIDEN: “It’s awful hard as well to get Latinx vaccinated… Why? They’re worried they’ll be vaccinated and deported.”
      Patronizing Latinos. You can’t fix Biden’s stupid and racism. But Alberto will get down on his leftist knees and worship him.

      1. All that comes out of your mouth is non-sensical garbage. Take a minute from your extremist, racist beliefs and use your own mind to contemplate reality as it is…not as you are told what it is by the Trump dominated political machine that turns out lies and conspiracy theories by the hour. Not holding my breath that you come down to reality and see the truth as it is, and not the truth as Trump would like you to believe.

        1. Trump is no longer the issue nitwit. Trump has nothing to do with our everyday lives. It’s your funky President Joe and his Communist anti-American policies. What truth? You don’t know what it is or able to handle it even if it bit you on your rear end. BTW – I’m not racist. You are. The biggest lie was propagated by your leftist Demoturds for well over 4 year. Recall the Russian collusion hoax? LMAO. Terrible copy and paste job from Mother Jones or the Huffpo.

          1. Take one of your Crazy Manic Depressive pills and go to bed. You’ll feel better tomorrow!

          2. Thanks for letting us know what psycho meds you take nitwit. Risperdal or Clozapine for your schizo condition? No HIPPA protection here. LMAO.

          1. I bet your Mother wears combat boots. So there! Please take your Manic Depressive meds before you go out and do something crazy.

          2. My mother passed away with a long life at age 93 nitwit. But we all know your mother was a Juarez whore. Tweak some some meth so you can shift change with that schizo voice taking over soon.

  2. Put the Lime in The Coconut she drank ’em bot’ up. I feel bad for making fun of Nut job like you. Hope I don’t hear from the Americans with Disabilities Organization!

    1. Sorry your Mom is a whore. She should have aborted your sorry ass nitwit. I see that meth is keeping you going. The only nutjob here is you.

      1. Dude! There’s a great B ball game on tv. Looks like the Phoenix Suns are going up 3-0 after tonight. Take a Valium and watch the game. Stop obsessing with politics and relax. If your meds don’t do the trick, just take a walk outside on your block. You’ll feel better!

        1. Looks who’s talking. Still trying to get the last word in. LMAO. I don’t watch woke MLB. Keep on tweaking that meth Alberto. You’ll need it for your after midnight psycho rants. Have a nice short nap nitwit.

    1. Yet last summer thousands of unruly, lawless democrats under the name BLM and ANTIFA, murdered people, burned down cities, ransacked businesses, attempted to attack the White House and that’s ok?

    2. I like my F150. Hey nitwit you left off guns. You seriously think we are unarmed? Don’t bring your knife to a gunfight. BTW – ISIS? What ISIS? Trump defeated them and brought peace to the Middle East. But dementia Joe will let the Taliban thrive.

  3. Twiddlee Dumb and Twiddlee Dumber out of their Rabbit Holes to rant Delusional garbage. In their deluded Trump brainwashed minds Antifa disguised as Redneck hillbillies attacked the White House on 1/6 with FBI help! That’s not all. Apparently a masterful deal brokered by Jared Kushner has brought lasting Peace to the Middle East. White terrorism, the #1 concern of federal authorities, is not to blame for all the violence perpetrated against Jewish, Hispanic, and Black citizens in the US today. You fool no one with your psycho-babble of gun violence threats and rampant overt Racism disguised as Love for America. You are just the same old White Supremacist using KKK tactics pretending to want to want to make America great again when in Reality you stew in your bigoted juices wishing the idea of a White powered society would be here again just as it was when your parents taught you to hate others that didn’t think or look like you.

    1. Bad copy and paste from HuffPo, Daily Beast or Mother Jones Alberto. Or be sure to let us know what rabid leftist sites you visit. You’re too stupid to write this delusional rant BTW – White House? How about U.S. Capitol. Dummy! Be sure to proof read what you plagerize. LMAO.

    2. You tell them uxcrement. Senile Joe Crow biden is waiting to be woken up from his nap with your genius sycophant’s rant. Good thing alberto doesn’t know you’re here. He would spit on you.

  4. Oh look! It’s the 3 stooges. It doesn’t take much to impress these dummy Bigots. Whenever I impress them with a short essay on Bigotry 101 they are struck with disbelief at what I throw at them. I am actually proud that my short missives are looked at as copy and paste plagiarism from Huffington

    1. Everything you’ve ever said is incoherent leftist propoganda. You are clearly suffering from severe mental illness. Get some help.

  5. …Post and Mother Jones! I can tell You illiterate dummies are easily impressed and easily offended when someone calls out your life-long imprinted bigotry and lack of formal education. Look Ma, look Pa, this guy’s writing looks too good. Humm. Must be fake or a copy of what some paid writer would put out. Thanks for the compliment, boys. But coming from you dummies, the compliments seem are little overblown.

    1. You don’t impress anybody. You’re nothing but low-life leftist scum. You are the second most uninformed person on the this site. Second only to Charlie Ebdou/Mark Turner.

      1. Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but…you know the rest! Or as they say in the backwoods of Georgia where you grew up—Eat shit and Bark at the Moon!

  6. Try to think of something to write about that is non-bigoted, Racist, or plain dumb. Write something that doesn’t contain third grade school yard name-calling, or boys bathroom gossip. Write something based on reality and not regurgitated Retrumpican talking points taken from the minds of your White Power slavish dispositions learned from the heads of your heroes of the Fringe Far right. I know, I know. This will be an impossible task for you, but hey, if we can land a Man on the Moon, or spacecraft on Mars you too can try to achieve the impossible.

    1. Trump made America great again.. Bidens the ones destroying America and selling us out to our enemies. You should try reliable news sources instead of leftist propaganda and completely inaccurate CNN.

        1. He’s taken money from both China and Russia and involved his son in deals that risk national safety. The Ukrainian quid pro quo to save his sons worthless butt. He shut down the US pipelines but rewarded Russia for attacking ours by allowing Russia to open theirs. Joining the Paris climate accord scam nd the Iran deal scam. Both costing the United States millions. He’s allowed at least 2 major cyber attacks with more to come and he has done nothing to stop it. He continues to push the Green New Deal scam and us moving the country towards the new democratic socialist form of government. All America last policies. The list grows daily.

          1. Old Granny maga has no idea what reality is anymore. Ever since the “greatest president of all time” turned out to be the BIGGEST LOSER OF ALL TIME she spends her days and night reshaping the facts in her mind to justify the Fat Orange Idiot’s loss of the presidency after just one term. The American populace has spoken. W-E D-O-N-T W-A-N-T A B-I-G-O-T for president!! Simple as that!

          2. Alberto up from his frequent naps. The worst President of all time is Obama. Biden is a close second. You seriously think dementia Joe will make two years of his 4 year term? I seriously doubt that.

        2. Charlie Dumbo nitwit explain Biden’s accomplishments the past 5 months and how he hasn’t sold us out to our enemies. You keep evading these issues.

  7. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA, ALWAYS, ALWAYS CHASE STUPID DEMOCRATS OUT OF TEXAS.
    .
    The Bidumb/Veep Throat “aide” initiated the near contact.
    .
    Nuisance lawsuit by horrible, terrible humans, a.k.a. Democrats.

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