Category Archives: Texas Politics

Castro topping Cruz in Early Poll

 Texas Lyceum has released a poll showing that Sen. Ted Cruz (TP-Texas) is vulnerable at an early stage of the 2018 Senate race.  The poll shows Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) slightly ahead in a potential matchup with the Senator referred to as “Lying Ted” by our President (Note:  Red prefers “Chicken Ted”).  The poll shows Castro with 35 percent support of Texas adults and Cruz lagging behind with 31 percent. Even less well known State Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso) is tied with Cruz at 30 percent.

Although good news for Democrats, keep in mind that a Democrat hasn’t won a Senate race in Texas in 29 years and there is not a single state-wide Democratic office-holder thanks primarily to the Bush family.  But the fact that there might be two viable Democratic candidates for any state-wide office is remarkable given the current state of Texas politics. 

Red has endorsed O’Rourke, but would support the emaciated walking dead ghost of former Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis against Cruz if he could get his name on the ballot.   

That Ted Cruz Town Hall Was Great!

Red really enjoyed the Town Hall meeting hosted by Sen. Ted Cruz (TP-Texas) the other day.  He especially liked the part where the Junior senator – that our President formerly referred to as “Lying” Ted –  never showed up.  That’s because everyone wins when Ted doesn’t post.  Cruz gets to avoid angry constituents who have come to realize that Ted is all about the greater glorification of all things Ted Cruz and that he really couldn’t give a crap about the state he supposedly represents.  For Cruz, being a senator is not about doing your job, it’s all about have a platform for his overweening ambition.  The constituents themselves are winners too, because they get to avoid actually having to be in the presence of the odious Cruz – who just might be the most obnoxious human being Red has ever met.  So it’s really a win-win situation when Ted fails to interact with the good folks he is supposed to represent.

Meanwhile, Cruz has had plenty of time this month to visit the Peterbilt factory in Denton and the Daikin plant in Waller where he gets to bloviate before a captive audience that is unlikely to pose any challenge.  So Cruz is capable of getting out and meeting people in Texas – he just wants to be able to control the narrative and not have to face people who might challenge him.  This brilliant guy who was able to take on the toughest questions from some of the brightest legal minds on the Supreme Court and other Courts of Appeals is somehow incapable of dealing with us average folks who just might not agree with his Tea Party nonsense.  Trump was wrong – he’s not “Lying” Ted he is “Chicken” Ted.

 

Red Endorses Beto O’Rourke for U.S. Senate

Last week Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D- El Paso) announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate seeking to unseat “Lying” Ted Cruz (TP-Texas).  O’Rourke comes from a political family – his father was El Paso County Judge.  O’Rourke himself has been in politics for about 12 years – first serving as an El Paso City Councilman and then barely unseating 8-term Congressman Silvestre Reyes in the Democratic primary in 2012.

O’Rourke carries some baggage from his days as a rock musician and two arrests – neither of which resulted in a conviction.  Since then, he has operated a successful business – making enough money to venture into politics.  His legislative track record is light, but that would be expected from a Democratic Congressman from Texas serving in a GOP dominated House of Representatives.

O’Rourke has taken strong stands on legalization of marijuana and protecting LGBT rights, but he kicked off his “campaign” when he and Rep. Will Hurd (R-San Antonio) embarked on a 3 day road trip to D.C. when airline flights were cancelled.  The two representatives live-blogged their discussions as they drove east and created remarkable internet buzz by rationally and civilly discussing the issues.

It is worth noting, that no one from El Paso has ever been elected to state-wide office and that O’Rourke is a long shot against the Cruz publicity and money machine.  The only hope would be that Cruz’s overweening ambition and narcissism will turn off enough moderates to consider making a switch.  Still it would be remarkable if O’Rourke could crass the 45% threshold.  But when faced with a choice of “Lying” Ted or a long shot, Red is not afraid of big odds.  Red is fully on the Beto Bandwagon.

If you are interested in O’Rourke’s campaign, you can find out more at betofortexas.com.

Ken Paxton – Vexatious Litigant (cont.)

It’s not enough that Ken Paxton is suing the federal government (again) – this time over the important issue of who gets to pee where.  But now it comes out that Paxton went actively looking for a client to challenge new guidelines aimed at protecting the rights of transgender students.   The Texas Tribune reports that Paxton approached at least two school districts in his quest to find a client to represent.  Paxton was turned down after his assistants made a pitch to the Wichita Falls ISD to enact an identity at birth peeing policy.   But the WFISD board turned him down.

“I feel like in this situation we’ve been put between a rock and a hard place by both the federal and our state government where we are the ones who would be the sacrificial lambs effectively in this fight,” said board member Elizabeth Yeager. “I think that would be completely a waste of time and a distraction from our school business of educating students.”

Wichita Falls Superintendent Michael Kurht also came out against adopting the policy, citing legal counsel that the school district’s current policies were in compliance with the new federal guidelines.  “I don’t know that my time and the district’s time is best suited to do this,” he said.

Kudos to the WFISD for having the sense to not pick an unnecessary fight and to not make their transgender students into a political pawn.

Unfortunately, the folks at the tiny Harrold ISD were not so immune to the charms of the wily Paxton.   After being approached by Paxton’s surrogates, the Harrold ISD adopted a transgender policy clearly targeted to run afoul of the federal guidelines.  Finding a willing dupe for his political agenda, Paxton issued the following duplicitous statement:

“Harrold Independent School District fulfilled a responsibility to their community and adopted a bathroom policy that puts the safety of their students first. Unfortunately the policy placed them at odds with federal directives handed down earlier this month. That means the district is in the crosshairs of the Obama administration, which has maintained it will punish anyone who doesn’t comply with their orders.”

Yes, they were goaded into adopting a policy so that Paxton would have yet another chance to file a frivolous lawsuit and waste more of your taxpayer dollars.  When a non-government lawyer goes looking for a client unsolicited they have a name for it – Barratry.  When Ken Paxton does it nothing happens.

 

The GOP Voters Disappoint Red

The voters in the GOP primary run-off elections did themselves and Red a great disservice by rejecting Mary Lou Bruner for a position on the State Board of Education.  Readers may recall that Bruner, a Tea Party stalwart and former school teacher, had claimed that President Obama had been a gay prostitute in his youth to pay for his drug habit.  That’s just an extraordinary dose of crazy that very few politicians can deliver.  But Bruner kept the hits coming when she also claimed that the Noah’s Ark flood had extinguished the dinosaurs and that the Democrats had killed President Kennedy.   Such crazy talk did not keep Bruner down as she nearly won in the GOP primary in March and would surely have been elected to the SBOE in the fall despite her lunatic fringe beliefs.  But alas, Bruner went down in flames Tuesday night losing the run off by 18 points to local school board president Keven Ellis.  So unfortunately, Red will not be able to parade her around as the poster child for the band of right-wing zanies that goes by the name of the Texas GOP.

We Haven’t Heard the Last of “Lyin’ Ted”

Christopher Hooks of the Texas Observer has been following Sen. Ted Cruz (TP-Texas) for quite a while and is convinced that Cruz’s quest for the White House has just barely begun.  Hooks examines Cruz’s non-concession speech after getting drubbed in Indiana and sees Cruz planting the seeds for another run in 2020.

Approximately three minutes and 30 seconds into Ted Cruz’s Indiana speech announcing the end of his 2016 presidential campaign, he announced the beginning of his 2020 presidential campaign — before he had even said the words that made his retreat from the field of battle official. For years, Cruz had been telling conservatives about Ronald Reagan in 1980, and the great reversal against Carter’s liberalism. But now, in defeat, he spoke about Ronald Reagan in 1976, the year the Gipper came close to beating Gerald Ford in the Republican primary but came just short of the finish line.

Cruz’s ambition and self-regard is all-consuming. He seems to have possessed a single-minded determination to become president from the time his classmates were falling off of monkey bars. So it’s a fair bet that he woke up the morning after the Indiana primary and started to make plans. But how should he play his hand as Trump flails his way to the general election?

Texas GOP Ready to Play the Gay Bashing Card One More Time

The Houston Chronicle gets an early jump on the 2017 Legislative session by looking at proposed GOP legislation that would legalize discrimination against gay Texans based on one’s religious beliefs.

Get ready for another round in Texas, too. For state Rep. Matt Krause, a Fort Worth Republican, the fight here extends to legislation next session that would “supplement the state’s existing law to allow business owners to refuse services to people whose lifestyles clash with their religious beliefs,” as reported by the Austin American-Statesman’s Tim Eaton.

Except Krause isn’t only after a law, which would require simple majorities in both chambers and Gov. Greg Abbott’s approval. He wants to send the question to voters as a proposed constitutional amendment — the first time they will vote on something remotely related to gay rights since 2005. Krause has to clear a high bar first, though. He needs to win the support of two-thirds of the House and Senate to get it on the ballot. Still, the issue is that important to him, Krause told Eaton.

“I wanted to put it in the constitution to make it even stronger,” he said. “It is still something I think is very important.”

Should Krause get the election he desires, it will create some crucial challenges and opportunities all around that may well define the political contours of this fight in Texas for years to come.

Red supports the proposed amendment.  Red is anxious to discriminate against numerous of his fellow citizens who have raised Red’s holy ire.  Red’s religious beliefs will prohibit him from providing services to left-handed owners of dogs that weigh more than 50 lbs (the dogs that is), drivers who fail to follow the “every other car” rule,  anyone who claims soccer is boring, stockbrokers, people who fart in elevators just before exiting, Rep. John Culberson, Dallas Cowboys fans, lake trash, Bluetooth cell phone users, anyone appearing on a “Best Dressed” list, several of Red’s in-laws and a few cousins, Aquarians, ethnic Albanians, and high-school science teachers.  There are probably a few more, but this is a good start.