Tag Archives: Texas Land Commissioner

George P. Bush – Getting Heat from the Right and Left Side

Texas Land Commissioner and Bush family scion, George P. Bush is taking heat from both sides of the political aisle.  He is, of course, unloved to say the least by any Democrats who still wonder exactly how Uncle George completely flipped the political omelet in Texas with his election as Governor back in 1994 and have never recovered.  But now George P. is taking heat from the ultra-right not only for doing a terrible job as Land Commissioner but for a number of alleged ethical failings.

For an example of just how much he is loathed by the far right, take a gander at the Texian Partisan.   TP has chronicled George P.’s troubles with the Alamo restoration leading up to his planned resignation from the Alamo Trust under a cloud of suspicion, his secretive West Austin mansion held under a trust which GPB failed to disclose in his Texas Ethics Commission filings, and his false claim to be a “retired naval officer.”  Interesting reading.

In the interest of full disclosure, Red has endorsed Jerry Patterson in the upcoming GOP primary.

Texas’ Hottest Primary Contests

The Texas Tribune’s Ross Ramsey has categorized some of the 215 contested primary elections for statewide office, U.S. Congress and the Statehouse according to his calculation of the heat of the race  See Ramsey’s temperature scale of hottest, hotter and hot contests here.

The one GOP race that has Red excited is the contest to unseat Do-Nothing Land Commissioner and only holding office by virtue of his family name George P. Bush.  The Bush family scion had done nothing to deserve election to statewide office and by all accounts doesn’t really do much on the job other than collect a paycheck on the taxpayer dime.  Red is firmly backing former LC Jerry Patterson who actually wants to do a good job for Texas and protect Texas public lands.  Patterson fought hard for our historically open beaches when the Texas Supreme Court attempted to cut back access with bizarre rulings based on arcane concepts.   Patterson is a little extreme for Red’s taste on the weapons front –  but other than allowing hunting on some public lands (which is sorely lacking in Texas compared to our western neighbors), his views on concealed and open carry laws will not have much impact on the Land Commissioner’s office.

George P.’s endorsement of Donald Trump after Trump totally trashed his father JEB!!!!$$$$? tells you just about everything you need to know about the current LC.  Some might say only a spineless weasel of an ambitious politician would endorse a man who called his dear old Dad “dumb as a rock” – which was actually among his kinder things Trump said about JEB!!!!$$$$?.  Red won’t go that far, but you can.

George P. – Can’t make up his mind on Special Session for Harvey Relief

Bush family scion – and less importantly Texas Land Commissioner – George P. Bush thought that a special session for the Texas Legislature to appropriate funds from the Rainy Day Fund would be a good idea – at least until he didn’t.

In an interview with the hardly left-wing Bryan-College Station Eagle, GPB was quoted calling for a special session.

“The Legislature needs to take a deep look at the Rainy Day Fund. We need a special session, and the governor needs to call it.”

That was Sunday. It didn’t take long for GPB to change his mind.  “I clearly misspoke” Bush said later this week when pressed on the issue.  Bush’s convictions apparently run about as deep as a stern phone call from the Governor’s office.  Gov. Abbott has resisted any call to use the RDF for Harvey relief despite the projection that the hurricane is a $120 billion disaster. Red doesn’t call him “Our Poor Idiot Governor” for nothing.  In fairness to Abbott, Red hasn’t yet met a Texas Governor undeserving of the title.

Another Bush Reads from the Script

Land Commissioner and Bush family scion George P. is living up to his family legacy of being water boys for powerful corporate interests by leading a push to make it more difficult to add species to the national Endangered Species List.  And in doing so – George P. attacks the most endangered species in Texas – the trial lawyer.  Thanks  largely to Uncle George W.’s demagoguery and kowtowing to the insurance and medical lobby, the rights of Texas citizens to a fair trial have never been in more danger.  So George P. jumps on the bandwagon in paying obeisance to his corporate masters by attacking lawyers and sucking up to the Tea Party base.   The Texas Tribune has the full story.

The son of GOP presidential hopeful and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is leading an alliance of 23 state land commissioners in a charge against the Endangered Species Act, calling for more transparency on how animals are added to the federal endangered list.

In question is a practice known  “sue and settle” under which environmental advocates sue the federal government if it misses deadlines to respond to their petitions seeking to name a new endangered species. To avoid long court trials, agencies such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service sometimes enter into settlements with the environmental groups filing the petitions. The end result, Bush claims, is species ending up on the list without sufficient scientific basis, and taxpayers end up footing the legal bills of both parties.

“The Endangered Species Act was designed to preserve biodiversity, not enrich trial lawyers and political activists,” Bush said in a statement. “It’s time to prioritize scientific assessments in conservation when dealing with property rights and our national security.”

But environmental groups that file such suits call those accusations unfair. Federal wildlife agencies can enter into settlements because its cheaper than trial and agencies often have to pay legal fees of the winning party if they lose a lawsuit under the Equal Access to Justice Act. This applies to more than just environmental plaintiffs.

Winning a settlement doesn’t guarantee an animal a spot on the endangered list. It only forces the agency to make a decision, which typically doesn’t come for months, or even years, after a settlement is reached, said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity. 

“Fish and Wildlife Service sometimes just doesn’t act unless they’re sued,” Greenwald said. “They have to get sued in order to list those species.”

In a resolution brought by Bush and adopted by the Western States Land Commissioners Association, the officials ask Congress to enact legislation requiring federal agencies to report legal expenses on “sue and settle” cases and relax the deadlines leading to such suits.

The settlements lead to “a flood of litigation,” Bush said, and the tactic “lines environmental groups’ pockets by looting the national treasury.”

Okay, George P. – how about ceasing a baseless smear job and coming up with some actual facts?  Since when is filing a legal lawsuit considered a criminal offense – i.e. looting?  Name one trial lawyer who has gotten rich filing these types of lawsuits?  Tell me whose pockets have been lined?  And what they did with the money?  And by the way, who has been lining your campaign pockets?  Would it by any chance be people who have the most to gain from a roll back of protection for endangered species?