Is John Smithee, the Republican state rep from Amarillo, running for speaker? The fundraising announcement below for Matt Schaefer sure looks to me like the early moves in a speaker’s race. Smithee is the emcee for the event, and the group of “Legislators attending the fundraiser” are associated with the tea party. This underscores what I wrote in an earlier post, that it appears that the tea party wants to engage in a purge of mainstream Republicans; among those who may be targeted are J.D. Sheffield and Bennett Ratliff.

21 Legislators to Support Schaefer in Tyler
Conservative Leaders to join Rep. Matt Schaefer in an extraordinary show of support.

Twenty liberty-minded members of the Texas House of Representatives and a State Senator will descend on Tyler for a fundraiser for State Rep. Matt Schaefer on September 9th. These leaders will join Schaefer to show their support and tell the people of Smith County about what conservative leaders are doing in Austin to renew liberty and stand for limited government. Rep. John Smithee of Amarillo will emcee the event comprised of more Texas Legislators gathered in Tyler than has been seen in a long time.

Schaefer was elected to his first term in the Texas House in 2012 and served on the Criminal Jurisprudence and the Defense and Veterans Affairs Committees. During the session, he played a key role among conservatives, taking on wasteful budget spending and vocally opposing increased regulations on businesses. Schaefer also was a solid supporter of pro-life and pro-2nd Amendment legislation.

Education was a top priority for Schaefer as he focused on issues related to career and technology training in public schools. He was proud to support legislation that reduced STAAR testing and allows schools to re-emphasize vocational classes in graduation plans. Schaefer was one of a handful of House members that co-authored the measure to restore financial solvency to the Teacher Retirement System and provide a cost-of-living increase for most retired teachers.

Legislators attending the fundraiser:
Sen. Ken Paxton – McKinney
Rep. Brandon Creighton -Conroe
Rep. Giovanni Capriglione- Southlake
Rep. Pat Fallon – Frisco
Rep. James Frank – Wichita Falls
Rep. Craig Goldman – Ft. Worth
Rep. Stephanie Klick – Ft. Worth
Rep. Matt Krause – Ft. Worth
Rep. Jodie Laubenberg – Parker
Rep. Jeff Leach – Plano
Rep. Rick Miller – Sugar Land
Rep. Charles Perry – Lubbock
Rep. Scott Sanford – McKinney
Rep. Ron Simmons – Carrollton
Rep. David Simpson – Longview
Rep. John Smithee – Amarillo
Rep. Drew Springer – Muenster
Rep. Jonathan Stickland – Bedford
Rep. Van Taylor – Plano
Rep. Ed Thompson – Pearland
Rep. Steve Toth -The Woodlands