84th TX Legislature: Where are We?

April 18, 2015

The legislative session is more than half through and things are actually looking pretty darn good- TO THIS POINT.
Remember our declaration in terms of the ‘trial’ of this session:

Our definition of a conservative outcome is that at least five of the following seven items BECOME LAW, with the first one an absolute requirement (none of the games of passing the house, but running out the clock on synchronizing with the Senate will count):

  1.  The budget does NOT get busted- by HONEST math, not by DC-style calculation.
  2. Open carry (for at least CHL holders):
  3. Campus carry- the same way
  4. Medicaid expansion blocked again
  5. The Enterprise Fund gets stripped to a small fraction of what it is or dissolved outright.
  6. E-Verify for State Contracts
  7. Ending in-state tuition for illegal immigrants

So where are we?  Well, Item #1 looks pretty good, based on a surge in revenue for Texas.  In fact, there is a glorious fight going on between the House and Senate on HOW to cut our taxes $4.5 to $5 BILLION

Senate: Personal- property tax homestead exemption increase; business- raising the exempted amount to eliminate half the businesses entirely from the franchise tax, decreasing the rest 15%

House: Personal- Sales tax reduction; Business- a 25% decrease of franchise tax across the board

Open Carry and Campus Carry passed out of the House yesterday.  The Senate also has versions. any discrepancies must be worked out in joint committee.
Medicaid Expansion does not seem to be on track to be considered.

The Enterprise Fund is intact and E-Verify for state contracts is not likely to ever get out of a committee (they say it’s not necessary , since Perry issued an executive order, which can easily be reversed.)

Ending in-state tuition for illegal immigrants is progressing but is iffy to get through.

More progress has been made than frankly was expected, especially on budget (due to available revenue), but it is FAR from over. And NOTHING of substance has passed BOTH houses. Conference committees can quickly turn into the Devil’s playground,  so we will see.  And there HAVE been losses: the extension of Pre-K passed without it being specifically capped in cost, for example (the vote to remove the budgeting cap amendment, where 27 GOP members joined the Democrats, REALLY identifies the true RINOS. Essentially, the same block stopped Jeff Leach’s budget amendment to stop using state taxes on building toll roads.) So losses will have to be factored in as well as wins.

Just remember: NOTHING COUNTS THAT DOES NOT BECOME LAW! Wins or losses.

The ‘trial’ of the session will be held some time this summer after the regular session and after any special session have been completed.  Look for further announcements.

Message to the Texas Legislature: we are watching and taking notes.  And we’ve learned a LOT about the games played; actual results are all that matter.

Future Trial of the 84th TX Legislative Session

January 14, 2015

First off, we’d like to extend our deepest appreciation to the 19 courageous reps who voted for their conservative values over the power brokers of Austin in the Texas House Speaker race: Rodney Anderson, Dustin Burrows, Pat Fallon, Bryan Hughes, Mark Keough, Stephanie Klick, Matt Krause, Jeff Leach, Matt Rinaldi, Scott Sanford, Matt Schaefer, Matt Shaheen, David Simpson, Stuart Spitzer, Jonathan Stickland, Tony Tinderholt, Scott Turner, Molly White, Bill Zedler.

Next, we are announcing, considering the Speaker vote and our specific commitment in that regard, the North Texas Tea Party will be scheduling a Citizen’s trial of the the 84th Legislative Session as to whether it fulfilled the commitment of MANY that it would be an a conservative reflection of the constituents expressed mandate given November 4th, 2014.  This is the current proposal:

TIMEFRAME: 30-60 days after the end of ALL sessions

DEFENSE TEAM: volunteer State Reps- previously TeaApproved- who supported the Speaker

PROSECUTORS: Selected members of specific conservative watchdog groups

JUDGE: A local conservative elected official- NOT part of the legislature (nor a candidate for it)

JURY: The NTTP Vetting Committee

The ‘trial’ will be recorded for posting in its entirety, plus relevant sections in isolation.

The prosecution and defense will have 20 minute introductions, followed by 45-90 minutes Q&A, and 5 minute closing statements from both sides. . ‘Witnesses’ may or may not be called.

Jury decision will be final: a finding of guilt will leave the ‘death penalty’ in place and no supporter of the Speaker will be eligible for NTTP TeaApproval and resources.  Exoneration will lift the ‘death penalty’ and all requesting state reps will be considered through the normal process.

For those who do not understand what the North Texas Tea Party is: we are a specialized candidate vetting and legislative advocacy group.  We do NOT recruit candidates- we merely vett them (Recruiting would remove objectivity). Our well-known abilities at this resulted in nearly all statewide candidates this last cycle sought to be vetted, and a couple of major donors, realizing the power and value of our multigroup voting guides, sent donations unsolicited by us to pay for mass distributions of those guides. Our voting guides were voluntarily downloaded over 23,000 times and we sent out 130,000 mailers last cycle; this made the difference in multiple close races.  We provide a service to voters who trust our work, ethics and political philosophy.

Texas Speaker Race visited by Sigmund Freud

January 8, 2015

Tonight, there was a debate at SMU between new Rep. Matt Rinaldi and Rep. Jason Villalba.  It was lively- with the audience of 300-350 about 90-95% Scott Turner’s supporters (Do ANY normal citizens or activists actually voice support publicly for Joe Straus??)
First, the most amusing clip: Freud stand up and metaphorically slapped Jason Villalba upside the head.

He also PLEADED for an opponent in the next election.  It’s pretty clear he’ll get his wish.

The full debate is here.  Watch and marvel on what a gem NTTP TeaApproved Matt Rinaldi is!

Patrick Fallon Announces Support for Scott Turner

December 17, 2014

pat_fallon_100 Well, Patrick Fallon demonstrated the political courage we have all come to expect from him. He listened to his constituents and, at the end of his town hall tonight, announced his support for Scott Turner for Texas Speaker in support of his constituents wishes. Do NOT underestimate the courage required to do this, swimming against the current of powerful interests, as it were. Kudos Pat; proud of you!

At least he won’t have to go into hiding from his constituents, like Jodie Laubenberg has had to. She’s COMPLETELY disappeared from all political meetings we’ve seen since it was obvious she was going to vote with the power brokers of Austin and NOT as her constituents would want her to. Guess she drained her courage on the HB2 bill (which used a LOT) and has none left in the tank. Truly sad. We never thought we would ever need to generate the image below, but it has all become too obvious.  And such images haven’t bode well for one’s life in politics; just ask David Dewhurst.


Ted Cruz expresses explains Obama’s Immigration Amnesty

December 7, 2014

Here is Ted Cruz’s full presentation to the Texans for Fiscal Responsibility’s Leadership Gala; in 2 parts:


NTTP Awarded for Conservative Dedication

December 7, 2014

At the Texans for Fiscal Responsibility Gala on December 7th, the North Texas Tea Party- via one of its leaders- was honored for their dedication to the conservative cause, Van Taylor having nominated us. While the award was given to Michael Openshaw (an inscribed sword to remind us ALL of Travis’s line in the sand, as well as a thank you note from Ted Cruz), it was actually earned by the entire leadership team. The photo below shows on the left (ONLY in the picture), Michael Quinn Sullivan of TFR, Jim Bright (Vetting Committee Chair), Michael Openshaw (Communications CHair), And Gerald Meazell (Vetting Committee member). The work continues- especially in early january timeframe witnh the startup of the legislative session.

TFR is the finest taxpayer advocates in Texas and we are humbled and deeply honored by this recognition.

Battleground Texas was an EPIC Fail!

November 18, 2014

How truly bad was Battleground Texas in performance? With the tens of millions spent, 56% of new registrants in large counties went with the GOP; they lost the women’s vote; and they lost Harris county (Houston) and even Bexar County (San Antonio)! 44-46% of the Hispanic vote went to the GOP as well. We welcome them back next time; there are still a few counties that need to be turned red! :D


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