Since Governor Perry's roll out, things have gone well. He is being tested by the media, slapped the Federal Reserve for its unsound weak dollar policy and survived critics. It's fair to say that as we stand here today if nothing dramatic happens to stop him, he will be the GOP nominee against Obama. The big forthcoming test is his ability to outline where he would lead the country as President and how he performs in debates starting this week.
Dan Patrick: Visionary Leader
Senator Patrick, generally thought of as the most conservative member of the State Senate, recently took a bold stand for more revenue for public education via an increase in the sales tax. TCR would like to see a conservative reform plan that reduces administrators, consolidates at least central office functions among the many small and inefficient school districts and looks for ways other than our already high property taxes to fund education.
Obama Off-Line While Economy In Decline
For someone who is said to be smart, the President seems slow. He wasted 2 years when he could've passed anything and did nothing effective to either allow the recession to clean out the excesses or to properly stimulate Main Street. It is now clear he leads from behind in all aspects of the Presidency. The clock is ticking and time is running out for him and the sooner he is retired, the better. Could anyone have done worse?
Full Faith And Credit Will Not Lead
To Gay Marriage In Texas
By Bob Shults, Guest Columnist
A recent issue of TCR raised the following question: with the campaign to legalize gay marriage making progress in other states, will gay marriage soon be recognized in Texas based on the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the U.S. Constitution? Under the plain text of Texas and federal law, the answer is no: (1) the Texas Constitution and Family Code state that gay marriage is against Texas public policy; and (2) the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) provides that states are not required to give effect to gay marriages recognized in other states. Instead, gay marriage advocates are pressing a different argument: that laws limiting marriage to the union of a man and a woman violate the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Texas Supreme Court is likely to decide that issue soon.
The U.S. Constitution requires states to give "Full Faith and Credit … to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State." It has long been recognized, however, that other states can refuse to recognize marriages without offending the Full Faith and Credit Clause if those marriages are contrary to local public policy. As the Supreme Court has explained, "the very nature of the federal union … precludes resort to the full faith and credit clause as the means for compelling a state to substitute the statutes of other states for its own statutes dealing with a subject matter concerning which it is competent to legislate."
Because Texas has a strong constitutional and statutory policy against gay marriage, it is not required to give full faith and credit to gay marriages recognized in other states. Article I, section 32(a) of the Texas Constitution provides that "[m]arriage in this state shall consist only of the union of one man and one woman." In addition, section 6.204 of the Texas Family Code states that a "marriage between persons of the same sex or a civil union is contrary to the public policy of this state and is void in this state."
A second reason that Texas can refuse to recognize gay marriages conducted in other states is the federal DOMA. Under the Full Faith and Credit Clause, Congress has the power to prescribe the effect of other states' records. It did so in DOMA, providing that no state shall be required to give effect to any public record of another state concerning a relationship between persons of the same sex, or to a right or claim arising from that relationship. 28 U.S.C. § 1738C.
Instead of relying on the Full Faith and Credit Clause, gay marriage advocates have recently argued that laws banning gay marriage violate the Equal Protection Clause. Long ago, the U.S. Supreme Court summarily rejected an appeal that raised a similar argument in favor of gay marriage. Baker v. Nelson, 409 U.S. 810 (1972). Recently, however, a Dallas district court handling a gay divorce case became the first court in the country to strike down the traditional definition of marriage as a violation of equal protection - even though no party had raised that argument.
The Dallas Court of Appeals reversed this decision and held that the traditional definition of marriage is constitutional, but the issue is now before the Texas Supreme Court. All parties have urged the Court to grant review, making it more likely that the Court will agree to hear oral argument and decide this case. The Court will determine whether or not to hear the case in the next few months, so stay tuned.
Bob Shults is a trial lawyer with the firm of Lugenbuhl, Wheaton, Peck, Rankin & Hubbard. He is the national Vice-President of the National Order of Pachyderm Clubs and was appointed by Governor Perry as a Commissioner of the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission.
Give Me A T For Texas
By Bruce Bialosky, Guest Columnist
Whoa, Nelly! Rick Perry announced that he was running for President and the dump truck hired by the left-wing media unloaded the next day. They rolled out their columns disparaging the "Texas miracle" quicker than a Nolan Ryan fastball. As always, the serious question is: How accurate are their stories?
Before we investigate, allow me to introduce some perspective. At a recent party, I was engaged by two gentlemen who were fascinated that I was a columnist. One of them works for a major East Coast university. When he found out that I regularly read the left-wing media, he asked my opinion of Paul Krugman's writing, and, in particular, if I had ever found inaccuracies in his columns. I stated that the problem is not whether his facts are wrong; rather it is his selective choice of facts and the misguided conclusions he draws from them. That is certainly the case with the barrage of attacks on Texas.
Here is a recap of what the echo chamber from the left is claiming about Texas:
1. The jobs exist because of the oil and gas industry.
2. It has the fourth highest poverty rate of any state.
3. The state is tied for most jobs that are minimum wage.
4. Texas has the largest number of adults without a high school diploma.
5. 26% of Texans have no health insurance - highest percent in the nation.
If you listen to the echo chamber, it certainly seems like Texas is one rotten place to live. But there's something missing here - the population of Texas grew by 20.6% between 2000 and 2010, and it's not all because of childbirth. People are moving to Texas in droves, an American migration that's been taking place for a long time.
In order to see the big picture, let's compare Texas to a highly unionized state like Michigan. In 1970 Michigan had 9 million residents; in 2010 there were 10 million. In 1970 Texas had 11 million residents; now there are 25 million. Let's look at it another way. In the 1970's, Michigan had 21 electoral votes, New York had 27, and Texas had 26. In 2012, Michigan has 16, New York has 20 and Texas has 38. See a trend here?
People, and businesses, are moving in herds from high tax, heavily-unionized states like Michigan to states like Texas that have low taxes and few job-killing regulations. Even though the left-wing media thinks that all Texans are gun-slinging Neanderthals, no one has put a gun to the heads of the people now calling Texas their home. That bears repeating: no one has forced them to relocate. They are moving to escape over-regulated, over-taxed, union-burdened states in order to be able to make their own choices about their lives.
Here are some facts that the left-wingers won't tell you. 50% of the jobs created in the country in the past decade have been in Texas, including 40% of all new jobs since 2008. Sure, Texas has an 8.2% unemployment rate, but it's because people keep coming. New York has an 8% unemployment rate, but it's because people keep leaving.
The left's problem with energy jobs in Texas is ironic, because they're the ones preventing the creation of real energy jobs throughout the United States. North Dakota is booming because of energy jobs and Pennsylvania has added thousands of jobs extracting natural gas. Liberal New York State, on the other hand, sits on its hands restricting exploration because of imaginary fears related to fracking. In fact, we could have a job boom in the energy industry throughout the country if it weren't for the policies of the Obama Administration and their environmental extremist cronies. Just think how that would affect our balance of payments.
But that's not the whole story on Texas jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that Texas is also numero uno in new manufacturing jobs, new aerospace jobs, new professional and business service jobs, new finance jobs, and new construction jobs. Low-tax Austin is now a booming high-tech area that competes with high-tax Silicon Valley. Incidentally, the Bureau also stated that median hourly wages in Texas are now 93% of the national average, and increased at a 3.4% clip in 2010. So much for being a low-wage haven.
How much of this is due to Governor Perry is for you to judge, however it's clear that he did not stand in the way of enterprising businesspeople and investors. The same cannot be said about President Obama. Almost every one of his economic policies has drained the private sector of financing and smothered their incentive to grow and create jobs.
Harold Meyerson made a clear statement of what is really at issue here. In his New York Times column, he wrote "Perry wants to unravel the national social contract." What national social contract? That is what socialists aspire for all of us - a government, run by Ivy League elitists, that takes care of us from cradle to grave. But Americans - who clearly understand this scam - are packing up and moving to states like Texas, North Carolina, and Georgia to escape their grasp.
Doesn't that say it all?
Bruce Bialosky is the founder of the Republican Jewish Coalition of California and a former appointee of President Bush.
TCR on the Air
Red, White & Blue featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland and liberal commentator David Jones, Fridays at 7:30 p.m. and replaying Sundays at 5:00 p.m. on PBS Houston Channel 8 and on the web at www.houstonpbs.org.
9/09/11: 9-11 and Changed Political Policies with Texas Senator John Whitmire, District 15.
For a fun feature go to www.houstonpbs.org and under Red White and Blue, you can see commentary about the show and its guests by Gary and David each week. The current show as well as past shows are also available on YouTube.
About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his thirteenth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last ten years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. As a public service for the last 6 years, Gary has published election guides for the GOP primary, general elections and city elections, all with the purpose of assisting conservative candidates. Gary is also in his ninth year of co-hosting Red, White and Blue on PBS Houston. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.