Triumph of the Know-Nothings
Wed May 21, 2014 5:34 pm

This is the worst election campaign season in my memory. Everything has been organized to elect the most radical candidates on the ballot, those who are the farthest to the right. The result will be the triumph of the know-nothings. Vast sums of dark money are pouring into the state to influence the election. Michael Quinn Sullivan and the tea parties are running the show. We’re on the verge of electing an attorney general in Ken Paxton who has violated the Texas Securities Act repeatedly. But if Paxton gets enough votes to become attorney general, can he serve as A.G. despite having felony violations on his record? Can he be disbarred?

It only gets worse from there. Dan Patrick for lieutenant governor? Sid Miller as the commissioner of agriculture? Glenn Hegar as comptroller? The tea party is running the state. This is not an election about issues. This is an election about our side versus their side, “our” Republicans versus “their” Republicans. In other words, it’s the Republican civil war. It’s a proxy fight for the next election, which will determine whether Joe Straus survives to serve another term as speaker.

It’s scary to contemplate the likely agenda for the 2015 legislative session. Open carry. Sanctuary cities. Arizona-style immigration laws. Cutting property taxes, thereby leaving local governments without the resources to improve their schools or pave their streets. It’s coming, folks. The triumph of the know-nothings.

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