This is a news release from awhile back, I have been meaning to post it to the site but I hadn’t had internet access for awhile. Now that I am back online I am posting it now. This is from my friends over at the Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) – and just an FYI I will have another post about YCT tonight!
For Immediate Release
January 6, 2010
Contact: Tony McDonald, Vice Chairman of Legislative Affairs, 512-923-6893
Laura Elizabeth Morales, Senior Vice Chairman, 956-821-7925
Where Does YOUR Incumbent Stand?
YCT Releases Ratings of the 81st Legislative Session
(Austin, TX) Since 1975, Young Conservatives of Texas have provided Texans with reviews of the voting records of legislators as a public service. YCT strives to measure each representative and senator’s fidelity to conservative principles. YCT is proud to release the 18th installment of our Legislative Ratings, the longest running and most respected legislative ratings in the state of Texas.
“Now is the chance for citizens to see where their incumbents stand and how they really voted,” said Laura Elizabeth Morales, Senior Vice Chairman.
Legislators are scored on a scale from 0 to 100, with points being awarded for each correct vote.
“YCT strives to choose votes that offer a clear choice between conservatism and liberalism,” explained Tony McDonald, Vice Chairman for Legislative Affairs.
The 81st Legislative Ratings also include a comparison of scores between House committee chairs from the 80th and 81st Sessions, a feature added to the ratings to assist voters in comparing the change in House leadership.
“Now that the candidate filing deadline has passed, we hope voters will take a look at how their incumbents performed and decide whether they need to be replaced in the primary or general election,” remarked McDonald.
YCT congratulates the members of the Historic Honor Roll, whose career ratings rank above 90%: Rep. Ken Paxton, Rep. Wayne Christian, Rep. Tan Parker, Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, Rep. Charlie Howard, Rep. Carl Isett, Rep. Joe Crabb and Sen. Jane Nelson.
YCT also congratulates the 81st Session Rookies of the Year: Rep. Randy Weber and Sen. Joan Huffman. Representative Weber tied for the highest score in the House, with a 97.
“We would like voters to be aware of who the Certified RINO’s, or ‘Republicans in Name Only’, are,” adds McDonald, “Rep. Charlie Geren, Rep. Delwin Jones, Rep. Tommy Merritt, Sen. Kip Averitt, and Sen. Kevin Eltife, all scored below 60% in the House and 50% in the Senate, respectively. Texans can also add Rep. Chuck Hopson to that list, who, while classified as one of the “Highest Scoring Democrats” for the session, recently switched to the Republican Party. Voters should keep this in mind as these candidates campaign as ‘Republicans’.”
The complete ratings can be found online at www.yct.org.
Click here to see the Google Docs version of the YCT Ratings
The Texas State Senate passed the Concealed Carry on Campus Bill by a vote of 20-10. This bill would allow those over the age of 21 with Concealed Handgun Licenses (CHL) to be able to carry their concealed handgun onto a college campus. Interestingly enough today the United States Cogress also passed a measure that allows concealed handguns to be carried into National Parks as well. While these are victories for those who believe in the fundamental second amendment rights of Americans, but the fight isn’t over yet. We still have work to do in the Texas State House, the Concealed Carry on Campus bill deserves and needs to be brought to a vote on the House floor. This is from the Young Conservaives of Texas (YCT) website:
The concealed carry on campus bill, SB1164 has officially passed the Senate! The vote to suspend the rules was a whopping 30-0. The official vote ended up being 20-10.
It’s because of student support that the bill made it through the Senate, but now Texas students have a bigger task ahead of them – pushing the bill through the TX House. It hasn’t been a very conservative environment in the House this session, making your hard work even more important.
We need you all to call the House Public Safety Committee members and urge them to vote SB1164 out of committee. Next, call Calendar members and ask them to set the bill on the calendar quickly.
House Public Safety
Chair: Rep. Tommy Merritt 512 463-0750 Joint Author
Vice Chair: Rep. Stephen Frost 512 463-0692 Co-author
Rep. Lon Burnam 512 463-0740
Rep. Joe Driver 512 463-0574 Author
Rep. Phil King 512 463-0738 Co-author
Rep. Tryon D. Lewis 512 463-0546
Rep. Barbara Mallory Caraway 512 463-0664
Rep. Eddie Rodriguez 512 463-0674
Rep. Hubert Vo 512 463-0568
House Calendars Committee
Brian McCall (chair) 512 463 0758 This is his Calendar’s office- Call THIS number!
Eddie Lucio III 512 463 0606
Norma Chavez 512 463 0622
Garnet Coleman 512 463 0524
Byron Cook 512 463 0730
Brandon Creighton 512 463 0726
Charlie Geren 512 463 0610
Jim Keffer 512 463 0656
Lois Kolkhorse 512 463 0600
Edmund Kuempel 512 463 0602
Jim McReynolds 512 463 0490
Allan Ritter 512 463 0706
Burt Solomons 512 463 0478
Remind these members that this bill has passed the Senate and has a majority of the House as sponsors, therefore, they would do an injustice to their constituents if they did not at least give the bill a vote on the House floor.
Thanks for all of your help so far. Let’s keep up the momentum.
We can do it … Stay tuned for updates!
This from Americans for Prosperity:
This week, 22 Texas Senators voted to expand our unemployment insurance eligibility in Texas. This will result in a short-term gain, but long-term cost. It will result in a tax increase that will impact Texas employers and future job growth. Please call those Senators and ask them to reverse their vote, and vote against this tax increase. The bill isSB 1569 and the next vote is slated for Monday.
Texas has the strongest economy in the nation for one reason — we work to keep taxes low. Texas has the largest job growth in the country, has been named as the best state for doing business, and has more Fortune 500 companies than any other state.
But some Senators are willing to throw our success away and accept one-time federal dollars that will expand our current program. The unemployment insurance portion of the so-called stimulus would pay for less than eight weeks of unemployment insurance payments in Texas. Passage of SB 1569 will result in a permanent tax increase for Texas employers and fewer jobs in Texas.
Our message to those Senators who voted for the tax increase: Don’t mess with Texas’ economy and job growth!
Texans want a paycheck, not an unemployment check. Our current program of Unemployment Insurance still allows those who lose their jobs to get unemployment checks while they look for a new job.
It is imperative that we not increase taxes at this critical time. We agree with what Sen. Tommy Williams (R-The Woodlands) said before the vote on Thursday:
“Texas employers would be stuck paying the bill, through higher state taxes, once the federal money ran out. I just felt like the long-term consequences of expanding that program are not good for Texas employers.”
Please call these State Senators and tell them to vote against this tax increase (SB 1569) and for Texas jobs:
Sen. Kip Averitt (R-Waco): (512) 463-0122 or (254) 772-6225
Sen. John Carona (R-Dallas): (512) 463-0116 or (214)738-5751
Sen. Wendy Davis (D-Fort Worth): (512) 463-0110 or (817) 806-4400
Sen. Bob Deuell (R-Greenville): (512) 463-0102 or (972) 279-1800
Sen. Robert Duncan (R-Lubbock): (512) 463-0128 or (806) 762-1122
Sen. Rodney Ellis (D-Houston): (512) 463-0113 or (713) 236-0306
Sen. Kevin Eltife (R-Tyler): (512) 463-0101 (903) 596-9122
Sen. Craig Estes ( R-Wichita Falls): (512) 463-0130 or (940) 689-0191
Sen. Mario Gallegos, Jr. (D-Houston): (512) 463-0106 or (713) 678-8600
Sen. Chris Harris (R-Arlington): (512) 463-0109 or (817) 461-9109
Sen. Chuy Hinojosa (D-McAllen): (512) 463-0120 or (956) 972-1841
Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr. (D-Brownsville): (512) 463-0127 or (956) 548-0227
Sen. Steve Ogden (R-Bryan): (512) 463-0105 or (979) 776-0521
Sen. Florence Shapiro (R-Plano): (512) 463-0108 or (972) 403-3404
Sen. Eliot Shapleigh (D-El Paso): (512) 463-0129 or (915) 544-1990
Sen. Carlos Uresti (D-San Antonio): (512) 463-0119 or (210) 932-2568
Sen. Leticia Van de Putte (D-San Antonio): (512) 463-0126 or (210) 733-6604
Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin): (512) 463-0114
Sen. Jeff Wentworth (R-San Antonio): (512) 463-0125 or (210) 826-7800
Sen. Royce West (D-Dallas): (512) 463-0123 or (214) 467-0123
Sen. John Whitmire (D-Houston): (512) 463-0115 or (713) 864-8701
Sen. Judith Zaffirini (D-Laredo): (512) 463-0121 or (956) 722-2293
We must take action on this. This bill will only provide 8 weeks of funding and then leave Texas to hold the bag and raise taxes on business and hurt our still strong economy in this state. Remember, even in this recession, San Antonio had is unemployment rate DROP while adding 4,000 new jobs over the last month. Yes, maybe in the short term this could be good, but in the long run it will hurt Texas and cost jobs. Take action and make sure that this bill does not pass!
BREAKING NEWS out of the State Capitol in Austin tonight. HB 1983, the Concealed Carry on Campus Bill has reached a majority in the Texas House of Representatives. 77 Representatives have signed on in support as co-authors of this legislation. Click this link (http://tinyurl.com/cvwobr) to see a list of supporters.
While some may misrepresent this bill as insane or disapprove, let me tell you why its important. Recall if you will Virginia Tech or Northern Illinois. These gunmen knew that their victims were unarmed and that made them prime targets. We aren’t talking about random students carrying guns onto campuses without training or permits (these people who wanted to do that would do that regardless). We are talking about trained, responsible, concealed handgun license holders being able to carry on campus to defend themselves in the event that this happens. It may be rare, but being the victim of crime in general is rare if you live in a large city like San Antonio (like myself), but just because it may not happen doesn’t mean you can’t be prepared and defend yourself in the event it does. Some make the excuse that what if someone snaps and goes crazy and starts shooting people? What stops people from doing that now? Nothing, students are prime targets because they don’t have the protection. But a rampage might be lessened if other students were able to mount a defense of their fellow students and themselves. By not allowing concealed handguns on campuses you tell students who might have CHLs that they can carry that gun to a restaurant, in the mall, at the movies, the grocery store, but not on campus. We have a right in this country to keep and bear arms, lets give the people that right.
This from the Texas Insider today:
Word around the Texas House of Representatives is that a phantom list of nearly 76 signatures is circulating that will take out Speaker Joe Straus when the time is right. A few representatives wishing to remain anonymous have told Texas Insider they have signed the sheet calling for a motion to remove the speaker.
When the House debated the Rules early this session, an interesting debate ensued – one that most people thought was moot once Tom Craddick was no longer speaker. Last session, Speaker Craddick was heavily criticized for his decision not to recognize members who were trying to push the legislative session off its tracks in its final days.
The issue in question was the infamous Rule 5, Section 24, which addresses recognition by the speaker.
This session, though a new speaker was named, (one many touted as bringing peace back to the House,) the issue of recognition was still at hand. Ultimately, the majority of House members voted to allow a speaker to be removed mid-session if, after a member called for his removal, the speaker denied it, and then 76 members signed an appeal to remove him.
But who ever thought members would use this new rule?
Fast forward a few weeks. We are now two-and-a-half months into the 81st Legislature. Committees and chairmanships have been assigned, and all of a sudden members are second guessing the choice for speaker.
Many Democrats had high hopes for plumb chair posts and committee assignments, but when appointments came out they were surprised to see their support for Straus didn’t pay off they way they anticipated.
Consequently, a large number of Democrats and a few Republicans have signed a list that may unseat Speaker Straus when the time is right. It has been rumored that the proper timing would be shortly after the budget passes the House, which it is expected to go for a vote the week after Easter (April 12).
The obvious irony in all of this, is that the coalition of 11 Republicans and 60+ Democrats who worked so hard to unseat Craddick finally have power. Rather than ensure they keep power, this same coalition made it even easier to oust a speaker mid-session by setting the bar for removal of the Speaker at 76 votes in the House Rules. A group of Republicans and a handful of Democrats failed in a vote to set the bar at 90 votes.
For the Democrats, the vote is obvious. Every Democrat would rather have a Democrat for speaker than a Republican. By removing the Republican chosen by 60+ Democrats and the 11 Republicans, Democrats hope to replace Speaker Straus with a Democrat immediately or throw the House into chaos without a Speaker.
For Republicans signing the list, the motives appear less clear. Some may hope to bring back Tom Craddick as Speaker, or simply improve position in committee assignments or with a subsequent Speaker.
Just as the final days of last session tested the strength of Tom Craddick and his opponents, this session appears headed for a test of the strength of Joe Straus and his opponents.