“Joe Straus Has To Turn to Democrats”

Texas Rep.Wayne Christian (R-Center ) asked an attorney to research the information being circulated by former Speaker Rayford Price (D – Palestine ) and by Rep. Deshotel (D – Beaumont ).
Rayford Price was the Democrat Speaker of the House for only one year (1972-73); and he formed a law firm with Ray Hutchison, U. S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison’s husband. Rayford Price practices law in Austin .
For some reason, the Austin American-Statesman on 1.3.11 decided to turn to Democrat Rayford Price for his opinion on the Republican Caucus to be held on Jan. 10 in Austin .
It is at this Caucus that the Republicans are scheduled to select the person they intend to support for the Speaker when a full vote on the House floor is taken on January 11.
Coincidentally, on the very same day (1.3.11), the Texas Insider published an article written by Democrat Rep. Deshotel. He also takes the Republicans to task for having a Caucus where they make their selection for a Speaker, and he basically accuses them of racism.
Price and Deshotel’s articles were published widely across Texas without anyone in the media refuting these two Democrats’ attempts to vilify the Republicans for holding such a Caucus.
Because of the research provided by Rep. Christian’s attorney, we now see that the double standard is alive and well in Texas .  The media has one standard for Republicans and another one for Democrats.
Here’s the situation as stated by the attorney:
First, the information and hyperlinks below indicate that the Democrat Caucus has a governing rule in their bylaws (at least as of 2008); to wit:
Article III, Section 8 of the Bylaws of the House Democratic Caucus which reads as follows: ‘Section 8. Speaker Races: Before each regular session of the Legislature or at any other time when a vacancy in the office of Speaker of the House of Representatives occurs, the Democratic Caucus shall nominate one of its members for election as Speaker of the House.’
Then the attorney went on to point out a very “interesting” article published in the Austin American-Statesman on 10.31.08 in which the Democrats were proposing to require their members to meet in a Caucus, sign a pledge, take a vote for the Speaker, and even make the voting a binding vote.
My question:  Why is it wrong for Republicans to have a non-binding vote when the Democrats have a requirement in their Caucus Bylaws that may even be considered a  binding vote?  In other words, the very thing Joe Straus’ Democrat buddies are accusing the Republican conservatives of doing (i.e., holding a Caucus to select a choice for Speaker) is exactly what the Democrats practice in their own bylaws!
I think the answer is pretty clear. I smell Joe Straus and his cohorts at work, tryingalt to squelch the conservative Republicans from holding the Caucus and electing the conservative Representative they intend to support for the Speakership.
Another observation:  Do Sen. Hutchison and her husband run in the same social circles with Joe Straus?  Was this a put-up job to grab the Hutchison’s law firm partner, Rayford Price, and have him create disunity in the Republican Caucus?
The common denominator between Joe Straus and the Hutchisons:  Karen Hughes
Karen Hughes was President George W. Bush’s advisor and since July 2009 has been Joe Straus’ strategic counselor.
Karen Hughes was also a major supporter of Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison for Texas Governor and probably knows Rayford Price quite well.
Photo courtesy of MJ
Do not be intimidated or fooled by what the press puts out.  RINO Straus and his consultants are spending a fortune to “buy” him this Speakership. They do not care who gets hurt, and they are practicing the politics of personal destruction.
We must not allow them to distract us from our goal of expecting our Republican House members to choose a conservative Speaker who represents the conservative views of those who elected them to office.  Joe Straus is NOT a conservative.
D’s circulate draft letter on speaker’s race
By Laylan Copelin | Friday, October 31, 2008, 10:49 PM
Texas Democrats are anticipating winning a House majority on Tuesday and kicking off a quick speaker’s race to oust Speaker Tom Craddick, R-Midland.
There is disagreement among Democrats over how quickly they should move on choosing a new speaker. Some want a de facto nominee to come out of Wednesday’s meeting of the House Democratic Caucus. Others think that is too quick.
Below is a copy of a draft letter outlining one approach for Wednesday’s meeting, as first released by Reps. Rafael Anchia and Joaquin Castro. October 31, 2008
Dear House Colleagues:
As we prepare for Election Day, we wanted to share a few thoughts with you. While primary focus this week must remain on winning our respective races—as members of the House Democratic Caucus we must also prepare for the very real possibility that Democrats may win a majority in the Texas House of Representatives. We owe it to each other and to the State of Texas to be prepared. With a majority, Democrats will carry the honor and responsibility of effectively governing the lower chamber.
Among our first acts as we open the 81st Legislative Session on January 13, 2008, will be to elect a Speaker of the House. Historically, Speaker races have been divisive affairs, characterized by secret negotiations, pledge cards and special interest interference. Like you, we believe that we can do better. First, it is critically important that we develop an open, transparent and orderly process for selecting leadership of the Texas House. Second, we must ensure that suspicion, rumor and innuendo not undermine our solidarity and trust as a Democratic Caucus.
If we allow outside special interests to divide us, we will fail to deliver positive and meaningful change for the people we represent.
Finally, we should adopt a process by which our Republican colleagues feel honored, respected and included.
In that spirit, we offer the following proposal to keep us united and focused so that we may move Texas in the right direction. The process proposed below should be viewed as a vital first step in fulfilling Article III, Section 8 of the Bylaws of the House Democratic Caucus which reads as follows: “Section 8. Speaker Races: Before each regular session of the Legislature or at any other time when a vacancy in the office of Speaker of the House of Representatives occurs, the Democratic Caucus shall nominate one of its members for election as Speaker of the House.”
We begin by asking that you refrain from signing pledge cards for specific Democratic candidates and instead sign on to this Democratic Caucus Pledge. The validity of this Democratic Caucus Pledge is contingent upon Democrats winning at least 75 seats during the upcoming elections.
As a signatory to the Democratic Caucus Pledge, you agree to:
1) Support a Democrat for Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives. In the event that Democrats win less than 75 seats, Republican candidates for Speaker will also be invited to solicit support from the Democratic Caucus pursuant to the process set forth below.
2) Participate in a Democratic Caucus meeting scheduled by the Democratic Caucus Chair on Wednesday, November 5, 2008 at 2:00pm (the “Caucus Meeting”) to begin the process of choosing a Democrat for Speaker of the House. If unable to attend for whatever reason, you agree to issue a written proxy to another Democratic Caucus colleague to vote (discussed below) on your behalf. This proxy should be recorded with the Chair of the House Democratic Caucus at least one hour prior to the Caucus Meeting.
3) Hear presentations from all of the Democratic candidates that have filed papers declaring their candidacy for Speaker prior to the Democratic Caucus meeting.
4) Participate in a Democratic Caucus straw poll to help choose a Democrat for Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives. The method of straw poll voting shall be agreed upon in advance by a majority of the Democratic Speaker candidates and approved by the membership at the Caucus Meeting. The voting system may include successive straw poll voting rounds to arrive broad consensus among the Democratic Caucus.
5) Vote a private ballot in the straw poll that will be counted by a group of three disinterested and respected Democrats.
6) Remain present in the Caucus Meeting room until the vote is taken and tabulated and a winner is announced.
7) Emerge united and prepared to work toward electing a Democratic Speaker. It is our hope that Democratic Speaker Candidates receiving the fewest votes during each round of voting would agree in advance to withdraw their candidacies.
Whether or not the straw poll will be binding is something open for discussion…
Sincerely, Rafael Anchia State Representative District 103 Dallas

Written by Donna Garner

North Texas Navigator News

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