Mark McCaig, Republican gadfly extraordinaire and frequent tormentor of Texans for Lawsuit Reform, posted a commentary on the Big Jolly Politics site over the weekend. Among his observations is an attack on the rankings of state legislators published by the Texas Association of Business. Writes McCaig:
With the legislative session in the rear view mirror and candidate filing set to kick off in a matter of days, a number of interest groups have published scorecards rating members of the state legislature. One of these groups is the Texas Association of Business, a powerful Austin lobby group. Over the years, the Texas Association of Business has given Republican voters the perception that they are a a conservative organization. The truth, however, is quite different.
In their ratings of the Texas House of Representatives [writes McCaig], the Texas Association of Business ranked libertarian-leaning conservative David Simpson dead last with a score of 47, the same score earned by several of the most outspoken liberals in the Legislature, such as Lon Burnam and Mary Gonzalez. TEA Party backed freshman Jonathan Stickland earned a score of 71 on their scorecard, placing him behind 15 liberal House Democrats and tied with notorious Houston liberal Hubert Vo. Six other conservative Republicans earned scores of 73, the same score earned by El Paso Democrat Naomi Gonzalez (who made headlines when she was arrested for DWI after causing a car accident during the legislative session.
The Texas Association of Business’ ratings of State Senators are even more laughable. State Senators Ken Paxton, Donna Campbell, and Dan Patrick are generally considered three of the most conservative members of the State Senate. They each earned a score of 82 from the Texas Association of Business — the same score earned by liberal Democrats Eddie Lucio, Carlos Uresti (a rumored Democratic candidate for Attorney General), and Letiticia Van de Putte (a rumored Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor).
I trust that readers will not miss the point of McCaig’s post, which is that the business community is no friend of grassroots conservatives, nor is it necessarily an ally of the Republican Party. This is as true in Washington as it is in the Texas Legislature, and it is one more indication, if any were needed, of the coming Civil War in the Republican party and how the tea party has changed the world.