Straus makes liars of Texas’ Republican Ticket

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Robert Pratt

Makes mockery of his pledge to the let the members run the House.

In mid-November I’d decided to let go, as a big issue, of the race for Speaker of the Texas House as more and more Republicans let it be known that they would support Straus for re-election to the powerful post. Conservatives in the House can’t seem to run a viable candidate for the post in the right way and so there was little reason to belabor the issue.

That is until we learned this week from Governor Perry that it was Joe Straus who has forced a withdrawal of the National Guard from the Texas-Mexico border. “I would have liked for the guard to stay longer; we got what we could get,” Perry said at a Capitol press conference. [1]

Your state reps., all of ’em, joined every statewide candidate in talking up border enforcement in this November election. And a few weeks later, many of them handed their support to Straus for Speaker – the man who was working behind the scenes to make liars of the entire Texas Republican ticket.

…it was Joe Straus who has forced a withdrawal of the National Guard from the Texas-Mexico border

Lt. Gov. Dewhurst in his petulance at being defeated flipped on the issue and joined Straus on the Legislative Budget Board vote to essentially castrate the border build-up. Dan Patrick, our next Lieutenant Governor rightly said in a statement, “While the expansion of the Department of Public Safety border operation funding is welcomed, the Legislative Budget Board should have extended funding for the National Guard through the end of the fiscal year in August. We should not be cutting back on funding for the National Guard at this critical time.”

Played as fools, our state reps have been, especially the true conservatives. We now know that Straus has worked hard to prevent a serious Texas-led increase in border security.[2] And he did it in a way that prevented House members from fully debating and acting on the issue themselves in January without incurring massive extra costs if the body decided to support the policies its members campaigned on.[3] So much for letting the members run the House!

Will our state reps have the integrity and intestinal fortitude to forego the perks of being on the Speaker’s team in the next legislative session and withdraw their support from Straus as Straus withdrew support on his own, without debate of the members, for the border security build-up that all candidates promised the people of Texas?

To my friends serving us in the Legislature: As a Republican elected state official, you are less than honest with us and yourself if you claim to be seriously concerned with border security and yet work to hand Rep. Joe Straus the power of Speaker for another session after what he has done. He made a liar of you and all Republicans. Will you reward that with your support?


  1. The DPS is far better prepared to actually police the Border. The National Guard was nothing more that a expensive show of force. They had zero authority to do anything. I support the DPS build up. That being said, I believe Straus is a poor Speaker and would as soon see him replaced. Just not over this issue. Pick your battles better. Thanks.

    • Pratt on Texas says

      You make an assertion with no evidence and miss the overall point. Such a judgement is one for legislators to make after debate – especially since most just campaigned on the build-up. Not an issue for the Speaker to decide which is hardly living up to his mantra of letting the members run the chamber. It is the primary battle as it is the issue which polled highest with voters just 30 days ago making it the worst issue for the GOP to back away from.

  2. David Carr says

    So Ted, what battle should we pick to oust Straus? He has squandered the GOP super majority and our opportunity to make revolutionary changes like school choice, property tax reform, and the border.

  3. Remove Straus from office or We, The People, will do it for you. It is really that simple. He is a liar, a fake conservative, and a weasel. His “leadership” has been nothing more than one bullshit deal after another with the democrooks. He has turned his back on us for the last time.

    We demand he be removed. Either the legislature does so or we will handle it ourselves.

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