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Greg Abbott’s Million Dollar Donor

A Central Texas rancher dropped some major cash into the governor’s $40 million campaign fund.

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Governor Greg Abbott’s stunning ten-day haul of $10 million into his re-election campaign account included one even more stunning figure: $1 million from a single donor. The money came from Michael and Mary Porter of the Cross Creek Ranch in Doss, a tiny Gillespie County town northwest of Fredericksburg.

The Porters are not known as politically active. Other than $5,000 donated to Abbott in 2014, their only other contribution was $50,000 to state Representative Doug Miller in 2016, during his unsuccessful Republican primary re-election campaign. Information available online shows the Porters as cattle ranchers, donors to the Doss Volunteer Fire Department and supporters of the military, giving out limited numbers of hunts to active duty personnel on their ranch. They started buying their land around 2009, and it is held in a family trust, with property appraisals of several million dollars.

I contacted the Porters by email and phone and received a reply from Michael: “My wife Mary and I care deeply about the future of Texas. We believe Governor Abbott has put forth a vision to keep Texas exceptional, and we wanted to do our part in supporting that effort. While we understand the interest this has drawn, we would respectfully decline to comment on further questions.”

Texas donors in the past have put multiple millions of dollars into various campaigns during an election cycle. In 2002, Democratic gubernatorial candidate and millionaire Tony Sanchez used $62 million of his own money during an unsuccessful campaign against incumbent Governor Rick Perry. But, to the best of my memory, this is the largest donation given to a single candidate in our state’s history. (ADDITION: The 2014 governor’s race is the only campaign I have not covered since 1983, so I didn’t have a memory of the $1 million donation that Wendy Davis received. Thanks to those who pointed this out to me.)

Abbott’s campaign report was filled with extraordinary top donors. In fact, I quit looking at the names of anyone who had given Abbott less than $100,000. Five families gave Abbott $250,000 each, while sixteen had given him $100,000 or more. State law prohibited Abbott from raising money from January 1 to June 19, the last day for him to sign or veto bills. So while his money drag was less than two weeks long, it left his campaign with cash on hand of almost $41 million.

So far, Abbott has no opponent in the Republican primary, and no major political opponent has emerged among the Democrats. A Dallas businessman and LGBT rights advocate, Jeffrey Payne, has announced as a Democrat and said he will loan his campaign $2.5 million, but Payne is far from a top-of-the-ticket standard bearer.

Perhaps this sudden infusion of money has energized Abbott, who seemed lethargic earlier this year. After months of looking like the do-nothing governor to friends and foes alike, he is now doing what he does best: running for office. Even the special session that began Tuesday has the feel of a campaign event for Abbott, designed to eliminate that do-nothing label.

Only the governor has the power to call a special legislative session, and Abbott has promised to load the session up with twenty priorities, half of which come from the Republican Party of Texas platform. He’s also promised to bend lawmakers to his will. “I’m going to be establishing a list. You and other organizations may be establishing a list. We all need to establish lists that we publish on a daily basis and call people out — who is for this, who is against this, who has not taken a position yet.”

Two years ago, Abbott promised legislators that if they voted for his proposed pre-K education program over tea party objections he would protect them in their re-election campaigns. But many this year groused that Abbott abandoned them in the election, which is why the House was reluctant to give the governor much of what he wanted in his budget until the very end of negotiations.

For those of us old enough to remember, Abbott’s naughty and nice list of legislators sounds a lot like President Richard Nixon’s enemies list. His was mean and petty and not less than a little bit paranoid.

But Abbott doesn’t really need to keep a list, because Empower Texans will do it for him. That group, along with Houston anti-LGBT activist Steve Hotze, has been high on the “Oust Straus” movement to get rid of House Speaker Joe Straus – which so far has failed. In no small part, it has failed because Straus has protected House Republicans from taking the kind of hard votes that might get them onto Abbott’s list. If you don’t vote, you don’t get on the list.

So while his donors seem to be doing just fine, more than a few Republicans are frustrated with Abbott and his push for private school vouchers and efforts to force bathroom policies on local school districts. Representative Ken King, a Republican from Canadian, spoke openly with his hometown newspaper:

“I don’t know why the governor would put [the bathroom bill] on the call,” King told The Canadian Record, “other than he has to prove he can be as far right as Dan Patrick.”

 

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  • WUSRPH

    I suspect that a number of people have given a million or more to various candidates in multiple contributions, perhaps spread across several races, but the only thing I can remember that comes close to this one time $1 million was in 1982 when Buddy Temple’s father paid off his campaign debt after Buddy withdrew from the run-off against Mark White. But that was “family”, not an unrelated couple. Of course, having given so much at one time they have probably made it impossible for the governor to name either one of them (or both) to some state board or commission, say the Parks & Wildlife Commission. It would probably raise so much interest that even Abbott would be leery of doing it.

    • WUSRPH

      PS….Another reason why the Oust Straus movement is not that successful—other than that Straus, by acting like a speaker and protecting his members, has earned the continuing support of a majority of the members—is the problem of “If not Straus, WHO?” I think there is little chance of it being anyone but Straus until that question can be answered with some degree of certainty and I don’t see that now.

      Absent a 1972-style turnover of the House, Straus’ successor won’t be a Freedom Caucus member or anyone too close to that group. But who does that leave? Dennis Bonnen has made it clear that he’d like to be the next speaker…..but, as one long-time lobbyist described him, he’s a bully and arrogant (without any reason to be)…So I see him as a Jim Nugent–someone every candidate wants at least neutral but not a winning candidate himself. That leaves one or more of the Straus top lieutenants–Byron Cooke and Charlie Geren, for example, but both of them are likely to high well-finance Empower Texas/T-Party opponent (again) and, as such, probably won’t have time to make a speaker’s race, assuming they make it back and it was close for Cook last time. So, who else? Some new-comer like Straus? I doubt anyone will be able to sell the majority of the Republicans on a Democratic-Republican coalition like the one that elected Straus. So that means a Republican elected by Republicans… and I cannot see who that might be at this point.

      • Gunslinger

        I don’t know. I could throw out a few names. Not a newcomer, but Zerwas might be a good speaker. I’d think Sarah Davis would be a kick-ass speaker. I wouldn’t mind seeing Lyle Larson in the speaker’s chair either.

        • WUSRPH

          If you think the crazies hate Straus, they love him compared to Sarah Davis. She has this basic problem—she is the ONLY pro-choice Republican in the Texas Legislature….and they try to get her every primary year. When Straus named her a committee chair it just added to the reasons why they hate him.

          • Gunslinger

            I suppose that would be a problem. However, I still think she’d be pretty darn good. And she’s not the only pro-choice republican…she’s the only pro-choice republican who’ll be public about it. (Trust me, I’ve heard others say as much in private.) She’s got guts. And I respect that.
            What about Zerwas and Larson? Any thoughts?

          • WUSRPH

            When dealing with a officeholder who tells you that he or she is pro-choice but who votes the other way, all I can say is to quote the French prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Trials:

            “Cowardice has never been a excuse or an extenuating circumstance.”

            It might be ethical to “duck” the vote…..but to vote clearly against your position out of political fear is the act of a coward.

          • Gunslinger

            Oh, man. This is going to be a little awkward, but…uh…and I hate to be the one to tell you…but, the Texas legislature is full of….cowards. I know this may come as a shock to some people, but it’s true. The pink dome is full of cowards.

          • WUSRPH

            No shock to me….I worked in and around it for 35 years plus….but, I might note, that the number of cowards in the Legislature is probably no greater than the number in any other location…..Millions of people are cowards in one way or another….It is a part of human nature…The difference between them and legislators is that legislators get more opportunities to demonstrate it in public.

          • Gunslinger

            I understand what you’re saying, but I don’t necessarily want the level of courage in my elected officials to reflect that of the general population. Just as I don’t want my military to have the same shooting accuracy of the general population…or my surgeon to have the same medical knowledge as every Johnny-Come-Lately.

            Cowards make poor leaders. And that’s what these people are elected to do, right? To lead? They went out and asked us to make him or her a leader. Many times they sold themselves as “courageous” and “thoughtful”, but when it comes time to make big decision they take the easy way out. I’d wager that most insiders know that we’ve got to replace the property tax system with some other tax structure, likely with a state income tax. But is anyone out there going to come out and say it? Hell no. They know they can’t be seen as voting for a “tax increase”, even though it’s probably the right thing to do in a state this size and this diverse.

            I once heard a lawmaker say, “You can stay in the Texas legislature forever, all you have to do is vote no on everything.” He was right.

          • WUSRPH

            Some, in very safe districts do, speak out for what is needed…….Others in less safe districts have—and have paid for it—that’s how we got Sen. Jane Nelson. The voters—-those that bother to vote especially in the GOP Primary—don’t appreciate the kind of honesty you are advocating….They want to hear the myths.. As a result, they get the kind of representation they deserve.

          • WUSRPH

            Today’s Austin American-Statesman has a piece on who is the most conservative member of the House….Davis comes out as the least conservative GOPer, but I wonder how many of the votes that made it that way are abortion votes. I suspect if you take them out, she’s pretty much like many of the others.

            http://politics.blog.mystatesman.com/2017/07/21/whos-the-far-rightest-of-them-all-on-acing-the-mark-jones-lib-con-score/

          • WUSRPH

            I kind of like Four Hand Price, but maybe just for the name……

          • BCinBCS

            O.K., I’ll bite…How’d he get that moniker?

          • WUSRPH

            I don’t know…but his official house name is Four Price…..(some people slip in the Hand)

  • Sam Jacinto

    Money has corrupted our political system. It would be difficult to deny that ALL politicians in state and federal office are corrupt.

    • Johannejsmith

      Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !pz106d:
      On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
      !pz106:
      ➽➽
      ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleFinancialJobsCash396HomeGroupsGetPay$97Hour ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::!pz106l..,.

    • txlakedude

      The Power, of low voter turnout.
      Benjamin Franklin…” when good people do nothing, bad things will happen.”

  • Fantasy Maker

    As long as this money is derived legally, They can spend or donate it anyway they see fit- that is the law. You might not like it but how would YOU like the government telling you or limiting how you spend your hard earned money?

    • José

      Nope. There are limits to what you can do. There are regulations in place specifically to protect the public. The Securities and Exchange Commission exists just for that purpose. We don’t let individuals cheat the public by manipulating the financial markets with big purchases, and we shouldn’t allow individuals to cheat the public by purchasing politicians.

  • Jay Trainor

    It’s an absurd notion that money is speech and corporations are people. My message will be drowned out by billionaires like Tim Dunn, Red McCombs and contributions of a million from the Porters. The same applies to organizations like the TPPF, oil interests, banking interests beer distributors or multi-state Toyota tycoons.

    We’re deep into a new Gilded Age. It’s time for a new Teddy Roosevelt to run roughshod over the 1% and put them in their place. My money is on Elizabeth Warren to make things right.

    • WUSRPH

      Same song, Twelve millionth verse:

      It is to be regretted that the rich and powerful too often bend the acts of government to their own selfish purposes. Andrew Jackson

      • Junerbenfield

        Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !pc87d:
        On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
        !pc87:
        ➽➽
        ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleFinancialJobsCash397GroupForumPay$97Hour ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::!pc87..,…

    • BCinBCS

      My money is on Elizabeth Warren to make things right.

      Mine’s on Kirsten Gillibran.

    • SeeItMyWay

      Thanks for stating it the same way I see it, Jay.

      It seems that some think that if the same gripes have been broadcast for centuries, nothing can be done to remedy the situation.

      TR did make a difference. A big difference.

    • Fantasy Maker

      The Supreme Court has already weighed in and decided this and Pocahontas is not going to do anything. Keep dreaming liberal pantywaist.

      • txlakedude

        A soviet Troll blathered more garbage. Thank you….lol
        Death to the great America, yes? Make America, a third world country, troll!

        • Fantasy Maker

          Go jump in a lake somewhere clown

  • Wurty

    I like Governor Abbott. $40 million would energize me too! And he is riding the Trump Train! Now if only I could wear my MAGA hat here in San Antonio without bus drivers missing my stop or gift wrappers/mailing screwing with which card goes with which gift I’b be on cloud nine. San Antonians are friendly until I wear my MAGA hat. Then they are not Texans anymore. Rather they are petty little people.;

    • SpiritofPearl

      They’re still Texans. They’re just not Trumpheads.

      • Wurty

        No they are not Texans. One who doesn’t like me says things like, “Well, bless your little heart.” The people who mistreated me because I wore a MAGA hat are just assholes.

        • WUSRPH

          What does that make those who make nasty remarks about my Hillary sticker?

          • Wurty

            That’s up to you to decide. I simply ignore hillary stickers. What I think about them I keep to myself. It’s a matter of respect.

          • SpiritofPearl

            I agree.

        • BCinBCS

          The people who mistreated me because I wore a MAGA hat are just assholes.

          Well, bless your heart.

          • Wurty

            Hehe. I understand. Thank you for your hospitality.

        • SpiritofPearl

          What makes a Texan? Wearing a MAGA hat?

          I would never mistreat you because of your hat. Would you key my car because of my Obama bumper sticker?

          • Wurty

            A Texan, in my opinion is a respectful person, with a smile, a nod of recognition to everyone making eye contact, always helpful, vigilant but not intrusive. They mind their own business. And also independent but helpful. It is easy for me to make this description because I was raised in Massachusetts and lived their for 50 years. Ever here the word Masshole? haha. A Texan can be a hillary supporter. Makes no difference the political stance as long as they remain as I described. Of course I wouldn’t key your car. I might hold my breath as I walked by the bumper sticker. Nah, not worth the effort. haha

            That’s why I was disappointed when a city bus driver goes past my stop and I need to shout and run down the aisle for him to stop. And then he stopped on a dime, not at a designated bus stop. The only place where I did not get crap for wearing my MAGA hat was inside an HEB.It was disliked but ignored. I am ok with that.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Many citizens theoughout the country behave as you’ve described, not just SOME Texans.

          • Wurty

            That may be true. But being friendly is a culture in Texas. They are known for it. I visited many times and found it to be true. So I moved here. And it is true. In fact I believe overall, Texans excel in being friendly. I’m just in the wrong neighborhood. Remember, the state of Massachusetts can fit into San Antonio alone 50 times. So overall, Texans are super friendly. I’m just in the wrong neighborhood. A bunch of bitter Hillary lovers who don’t want me wearing my MAGA hat. Yet they have no problem posting a huge poster of Kennedy, Obama, and MLK on a major road. I did not tear it down, deface it. I let it be.

  • WUSRPH

    I cannot be sure that this all went thru, but this story from 2006, says that the late Houston trial lawyer John O’Quinn was at least reported to be pledged or given up to $3.5 million to the Chris Bell for governor campaign in 2006. This would top the Porter’s individual gift. (Thanks to JP for bringing this to my attention.)

    http://info.tpj.org/reports/governor06/octoberupdate.pdf

  • WUSRPH

    Richard Nixon had some strange ideas about the presidency—–if the president does it, it can’t be a crime–and so forth….BUT Trump’s are downright dangerous…….He sounds like he believes the stuff they falsely accused John Adams of advocating……HE IS THE STATE.

    http://tinyurl.com/ydf93k5u

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/07/donald-trump-ltat-cest-moi.html?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily%20Intelligencer%20-%20July%2020%2C%202017&utm_term=Subscription%20List%20-%20Daily%20Intelligencer%20%281%20Year%29

    • SpiritofPearl

      “L’etat c’est moi!”

      —- C. de Gaulle

      • WUSRPH

        Louis XIV And it was true in his case.

  • SpiritofPearl

    “I’m establishing a mailing list.”

    I’m trembling in my boots.

  • WUSRPH

    I suppose you saw that Patrick plans to “fund” the teacher pay raises and bonuses by “a transfer” (otherwise called “robbing”) the money from the Health & Human Services Commission? He must really believe that Trump/GOP Congress is going to do away with Medicaid or drastically reduce the state’s share of that program because with this “transfer” he is running the underfunding of H&HSC up to nearly $2 billion which otherwise the 2019 legislature will have to fund as an “emergency”.. But don’t you dare call this a Ponzi scheme or Enron financing…

  • WUSRPH

    Did you see the one in the Washington Post about how Trump is having the lawyers brief him on his pardoning powers, including on whether the can pardon himself? I guess that would be one way to end the investigations…..just fire the special prosecutor and then pardon everybody including your family and yourself. I suspect that it would raise a little stink…..but it would be a creative solution.

    • SpiritofPearl

      But Rosenstein has to fire Mueller first, then President Loco strongarms the next in line to the dirty deed.

      • WUSRPH

        One interesting question—other than can he pardon himself—is whether or not “accepting” a pardon comes with an at least unstated admission of guilt. There is also a question about pardoning someone before they are convicted, like Ford did with Nixon……This is unsettled law.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burdick_v._United_States

        because generally when a pardon is granted it is taken as being good. (The Burdick case is interesting because if involved President Wilson pardoning someone who had not been convicted of anything in an attempt to sidestep Burdick’s use of the Fifth Amendment….sort of like with an immunity…but Burdick refused to accept the pardon.)

        Ford’s pardon of Nixon may have established a precedent for the “before” question, but he indicated that Nixon had, in effect, admitted guilt.

        Trump, of course, will never admit he is guilty of anything at anytime. Thus, if he were to pardon himself and his kids, it might raise the possibility of a legal challenge to the validity of the pardon…although I would think the courts would let the voters and the Congress settle that question.

        There is also the question of whether a presidential pardon would bar impeachment.. or, whether that is a separate matter solely up to the judgement of the Congress.

        All of this is probably just theoretical as it is hard to think that he would really do it…BUT with Trump you can never know.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Must one be convicted to be pardoned?

          Does a pardon admit tacit guilt?

          Can a president pardon himself?

          Office of Legal Counsel statement on Aug. 5, 1974:

          https://www.justice.gov/file/20856/download

          • WUSRPH

            I had thought of the trick of having Trump step aside under the 25th Amendment for 10 minutes to let Pence do the dirty deeds….but thought that was too outlandish even for Trump as he might not trust Pence to give it up once he has it.., He could fear that Pence and the cabinet would all sign the form keeping him out. ..It is interesting to see that they were looking at similar questions BEFORE Nixon resigned.

          • SpiritofPearl

            The 25th implies he’s unfit to govern. Although he is he’d never admit it.

            Best bet is to educate senators that refusing to appoint an independent prosecutor will be rewarded in 2018.

    • txlakedude

      A vote for Republicans, is a vote for cowards, and parasites.

    • WhyMeLord

      I wonder if one receives a pardon can one still invoke the 5th amendment?

      • WUSRPH

        The precedent of the Burdick case from back when Woodrow Wilson was president suggests that you cannot. Burdick took advantage of his 5th amendment right not to testify in an investigation of a “leak” (had them then too) and Wilson tried to pardon him so that he could be forced to testify…but Burdick refused to accept the pardon….The SCTOUS ruled that since he had not therefore been pardoned (having refused it) his 5th Amendment right still existed. This would suggest that, if you are pardoned and accept it, you have, in effect, waived your right to invoke the 5th amendment.

  • John Bernard Books

    The most important story of our lifetime and you will never see it published here:
    “One of the left’s main arguments against reform is that voter fraud simply does not occur. How liberals arrive at this conclusion, we cannot say.

    Time and again, studies and analyses point to one incontrovertible conclusion: that voter fraud is a real and pressing issue that deserves serious solutions, and The Heritage Foundation has the evidence to prove it.
    On Thursday, The Heritage Foundation is releasing a new edition of its voter fraud database. Featuring well over 100 new cases, the database documents 1,071 instances of voter fraud spanning 47 states, including 938 criminal convictions.”
    http://dailysignal.com/2017/07/20/voter-fraud-database-tops-1000-proven-cases/
    I’ve never met a dem who didn’t lie and say voter fraud doesn’t exist. Lying is in a dem’s dna.

    • IndyTexan

      I’m an independent and the biggest voter fraud of all is that there’s more than a dimes difference between the parties when it comes to the downsizing of the middle-class and economic policies that are creating poverty.

      If you want to talk about election reform, start with doing all we can (proven redistricting reforms like independent citizens redistricting commission that we have now only in the city of Austin for city districts, only — is one of them) to minimize the dominance of the two parties over the growing plurality of voters who are non-aligned and looking for other choices.

      Bottom line is when you allow a political monopoly, then money becomes too dominant a factor.

      • John Bernard Books

        No you’re a liberal. How do I know? You’re hiding behind a pseudo….
        The comment was about voter fraud and how I never met a liberal who didn’t deny it.

        • IndyTexan

          It’s people like you — and liberals on the other side who use the word “conservative” as if it’s a dirty word — who are destroying our political system fastest. No room for debate, no room for building consensus. This session is a tragic joke. George (Washington, in case you forgot his last name) warned us about this ago. Keep it up and we — populist independents — will soon kick your ass, politically speaking but of course. Maybe, just maybe, the American public, who largely have little for use these terms, can save the Republic for which it stands.

          • WUSRPH

            Please feel free to kick all the political you-know-what you can…BUT please don’t waste your time responding to JBB, otherwise known as The Troll. His only purpose in life is to insult people and try to stir up troubles. Most of the regular readers do not even see his entries because they have blocked him out. All they see is “This user is blocked”. It is much nicer that way.

    • Not Omniscient Enough

      The Fifth Circuit found that Texas’s strict photo ID law is racially discriminatory, noted that there were “only two convictions for in-person voter impersonation fraud out of 20 million votes cast in the decade” before Texas passed its law. Numerous studies have found voter fraud rarely happens. You are reading fake news.

  • Not Omniscient Enough

    The rancher said he agrees with Abbott’s vision of keeping Texas great. Well Mr. Rancher.. Texas ain’t that great. We rank 43rd nationally in educating our children (vouchers will fix that right). We are the 38th most impoverished state in the union. In 2015 we ranked last in health care access and affordability. And his mission is to squash Planned Parenthood and make sure transgender kids continue to commit suicide at much higher rates than normal children. If you like things the way they are.. the poor stay poor, the poor stay uneducated, and the poor stay without healthcare.. well then your donation is going to do good work.

    • SpiritofPearl

      And more abortions occur because women can’t access afforable reproductive health care . . .

      • Not Omniscient Enough

        They want to end abortions, but then they don’t want to pay to keep these kids healthy and educated. I guess that’s what our prison system is for…

        • SpiritofPearl

          Sad, but true. Calvinism at work . . .

        • txlakedude

          No, when they are forced birthed, throw them on our streets for crime to eat and take care of themselves, yes? The

        • WhyMeLord

          They want to end abortions but will not do any of the things that would make abortion a lesser option. Meaningful sex education (just say no never works), birth control, affordable day care, a living wage, proper nutrition. Decent & safe housing, to name a few.

    • txlakedude

      Down the rabbit hole.

  • donuthin2

    Proves once again that there is not much correlation between wealth and judgement.

    • txlakedude

      Wealth today is not from creation, but from stealing from those who can’t afford to protect themselves. Wealth by parasites.

  • John Bernard Books

    Where is Sen Joe McCarthy when we need him. For most of the uninformed posters here the State Dept was rife with communists after WWII. Sen McCarthy exposed them much like Prez Trump is doing…today.

  • WUSRPH

    Things are starting to get nasty…..Patrick, according to the Quorum Report, is starting to call Straus a closet Democrat….and that from a man who was stiff-arming his creditors and running a sports bar when Straus and his family were fighting to make being a Republican in Texas respectable. Johnnie-come-very-latelys like Patrick should be more careful about what they say about people like that.

  • WUSRPH

    If what they say is true about what Sessions talked to the Russian ambassador about, he might wind up finding himself before the special prosecutor before too long. Is it possible to recuse yourself from a recusal?

  • WUSRPH

    A question to think about over the weekend:

    What does it mean for America if Trump fires the special prosecutor AND the Congress does nothing but squeal for a day or two and then goes on like nothing happened? As I fear is most likely…..

    • SpiritofPearl

      Mass demonstrations . . .

      • WUSRPH

        So what happens when your mass demonstrations make no difference…and are countered by mass demonstrations by the Trumptarians and the Congress still refuses to act? What happens when you have a president who, in effect, is above the law? What does this do to the nation?

        • SpiritofPearl

          Which congresscritter wants to run on the “I allowed Trump to fire Mueller” theme?

          Stay cool!

          • WUSRPH

            A congressperson who is afraid of the Trumptarians in the primary who would be proclamining Trump’s innocence…They would play to the theme that it is in the best interests of the country “to put this all behind us and get on with the great work of making American great again” It would sell.

          • SpiritofPearl

            That didn’t work out well for Gerald Ford.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Bubbas have had relatively few demonstrations. KKK marches usually have 20x more counterprotesters.

        • SpiritofPearl

          He THINKS he is above the law. Is he?

  • WUSRPH

    The idea of Trump pardoning his relatives and campaign workers to end the Russian investigation brings back memories of how George HW Bush stopped the Iran-Contra gate scandal by pardoning six people charged for their roles in that affair as he was on the verge of leaving the WH. That included the former secretary of defense, the former asst. secretary of state, his former national security advisor and three officials of the CIA. Just continentally (sic), the pardons came just as the special prosecutor was beginning to take a look at what Pres, Bush’s role had been in the affair which mostly took place when Bush was Reagan’s VP. Bush’s pardons would differ from Trump’s possible use of the pardoning power in that he waited until he was leaving office to issue them. Trump would be doing it with more then three years left in his term…and would, conceivably be pardoning members of his immediate family which would probably be the first time a president had done something like that..

    • SpiritofPearl

      The AG of NY can charge them with state crimes if a pardon is executed. Pardoning is a tacit admission of guilt. And they can no longer take the fifth . . .

      “Oh what a tangled web we weave . . .”

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burdick_v._United_States

      • WUSRPH

        Conspiring with the Russians is hardly a NY state crime…..but, yes, a local prosecutor with jurisdiction could go after then if there is evidence of any financial misdealings or other acts that violate state law but not IRS or other type offenses since any pardon would certainly cover any acts covered by federal statutes, etc. But how likely is that?

        • SpiritofPearl

          I’m betting even money he fires Mueller. Then it’s time to cue Warren Zevon.

          • WUSRPH

            For the sake of the nation I hope you are wrong……

          • SpiritofPearl

            Trump is a cornered rat. He will chew off his own leg to escape.

    • SpiritofPearl
      • WUSRPH

        Whether the president can be indicted is a good question…that certainly would be litigated if it ever happened….BUT consider this….a president is indicted….he orders the DOJ to ignore and quash the indictment and to refuse to prosecute. Sessions agrees. And the Congress does nothing. All unlikely BUT if you are right about how desperate Trump is, all possible. …But let’s leave this distasteful thought and try to have a good weekend.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Bill Breeden was the only person to serve jail time for Iran-Contra:

      http://thecompany.net/jason/posts/2007/bill-breeden-and-iran-contra/

      • WUSRPH

        Ollie North was convicted but those evil liberals at the ALCU got him off “on a technicality”.

        • SpiritofPearl

          No jail time for Ollie.

  • John Bernard Books

    Did the commies buy the election in 2008?
    “As many as 5.7 million noncitizens may have voted in the 2008 election, which put Barack Obama in the White House.”
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/jun/19/noncitizen-illegal-vote-number-higher-than-estimat/

    We now know the democrat party is made up of commies and terrorists….I support Prez Trump running the commies out of the State Dept….and EPA….and the IRS

    • WhyMeLord

      Channeling Joe McCarthy much?

  • WUSRPH

    Did you see the investigation is expanding into areas such as possible involvement of the Trump folks with Jill Stein of the Green Party……apparently in the hope that she would draw votes away from Clinton….The GOP working and even finnacing thrid-party movements to hurt Democrats has long been alleged—-we even had the case here in Texas of Rick Perry’s goodbuddy Mike Toomey financing a petition drive for the Green Party in 2010……so it would not be unknown for the Trump folks to tried the same….Here is a slightly humorous article from Mother Jones on the various efforts by the GOP in this area..

    .http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2010/07/texas-green-party-gop-charles-hurth/

    • SpiritofPearl

      He must be connected to Rob Morrow.

  • Dicky Neely

    Abbott, Patrick and Paxton are the most radical christo-fascists we have ever had at the head of the government. They do not love the United States as a country nor do they respect the constitution as our guiding document. Their interpretation of the bible and Christianity is highly questionable in my opinion.
    Southern conservatives once railed about “Washington” telling us what to do. Now these guys are claiming that Austin can tell you what to do. They are a threat to our freedom.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Truth! Read:

      “One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America” by Kevin Kruse.

      They even rewrote the bible . . .

  • John Bernard Books

    Ready for your Monday morning chuckle?
    “They subsequently figured out that voters don’t know what the party stands for, and the new effort is aimed at changing that.
    Schumer acknowledged on Sunday that Democrats were partially to blame for the American people not knowing what the party stands for.”
    http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/89ae8247abe8493fae24405546e9a1aa/Article_2017-07-24-US–Democrats-Message/id-574c58d40d4649a58db6ad0d064af77d

    Actually voters do know who dems really are and democrats were rejected.

    • WhyMeLord

      There is that thing called the ‘popular vote’

  • SpiritofPearl

    Blake makes Texas proud again:

    https://thinkprogress.org/amp/p/ca4a2f32c5d7

  • txlakedude

    Another dumbass, living in the sticks, buying GOP propaganda, and hurting Texans overall. These people should have been taxed on that money to keep it in the economy, not throw it into the Abbott septic tank of corrupt politics.

  • Jim

    “We believe Governor Abbott has put forth a vision to keep Texas exceptional”

    in what way is even infinitesimally true?

  • Jay Trainor

    Governor Abbott is making Edwin Edward appear to be an amateur. He thinks we don’t know or care that his corporate and billionaire campaign contributors, along with their dark PAC money, pretend not to sway his judgement on what’s best for the average Texan.

    We’ve seen this movie before with former Gov. Bob McDonnell and the ending isn’t pretty.

    • WhyMeLord

      Edwards did well by doing good for his state. Abbott OTOH …

  • SpiritofPearl