Abbott vetoes important taxpayer protection bill; panic? | More evidence impeachment wasn’t needed – Pratt on Texas 6/14/2023

The news of Texas covered today includes:

Our Lone Star story of the day: Governor Abbott has vetoed one of the most important taxpayer protection bills passed by the legislature and it appears to be an act of panic over his inability to fulfill, as of yet, his biggest campaign promise of record property tax relief – ironic almost beyond belief.

As The Texan reports it:

“In an apparent response to this property tax standoff, Abbott vetoed his third bill from the regular session on Tuesday: Senate Bill 2035 by Sen. Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston) that’d prohibit the kind of cheeky debt maneuver deployed by the City of Amarillo to finance a project voters had rejected two years earlier.

“Bettencourt is the author of the Senate’s property tax plan and, other than Patrick, the most critical of the current compression-only proposal.”

It appears the Governor, who has always had trouble working with the legislature, is in panic mode over headlines like this: DeSantis overshadowing Abbott as leading conservative ahead of the 2024 presidential election.

Update: From Lt. Governor Patrick: “The Governor’s suggested threat today to veto a large number of Senate bills is an affront to the legislative process and the people of Texas. He has now made his position clear – he doesn’t want homeowners to get the $100,000 homestead exemption that is the hallmark of the Senate Plan.”

Our Lone Star story of the day is sponsored by Allied Compliance Services providing the best service in DOT, business and personal drug and alcohol testing since 1995.

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals sealIn a deplorable decision by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, Ken Paxton’s criminal securities-related case will be heard in Democrat-dominated Harris County instead of his home county. On it’s own it is a terrible decision because it sets the idea that the state can venue shop in a criminal case as opposed to the defendant having the ability to be tried by his peers.

The Dallas Morning News reported:

“Judge Sharon Keller disagreed with the majority opinion.

“The Court cites no case supporting its conclusion that a regional presiding judge can vicariously agree to allow the holding of court by a different district judge under the Texas Constitution. Because the law is unsettled, mandamus relief is inappropriate,” wrote Keller, who was joained in her dissent by Judge Mary Lou Keel.

Judge Kevin Yeary also dissented.”

Separately, the case is yet another example of how the wheels of justice were already turning and makes the House’s radical decision to use impeachment in the Paxton case improper. Substituting a bunch of politicians for police and judicial systems, that come with due process and appellate protections, is unwarranted in the Paxton case.

I review more bills Governor Abbott has signed.

And, other news of Texas.

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