Texas Senate Primary: Citizens United Picks a Candidate, Another Gets Caught in a Flip
September 29, 2011 - 9:55 am
Citizens United is backing Ted Cruz to become Texas’ next senator.
“Ted Cruz will be a conservative force in the United States Senate,” said David N. Bossie, President of Citizens United. “Ted is a rising star in the conservative movement, and he will be a key player in repealing the disastrous liberal policies brought forth by President Barack Obama. I have full confidence that Ted Cruz is the true conservative in the race and will represent the great state of Texas with honor in the United States Senate. Texas deserves another conservative Senator.”
So that’s good news for Cruz. There’s also bad news for one of his opponents, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and it concerns a topic that has been in the headlines of late: in-state tuition for illegal aliens.
Ex-TX Solicitor Gen. Ted Cruz (R) “painted” LG David Dewhurst’s (R) break with Gov. Rick Perry (R) over a law that makes some illegal immigrants eligible for in-state college tuition as another flip-flop. Cruz, in a statement: “This is another Republican primary year conversion by David Dewhurst. He was for in-state tuition for illegal immigrants before he was against it. The next Senator from Texas needs to be a strong conservative who knows what he believes. I strongly oppose in-state tuition for illegal aliens, and categorically oppose amnesty or preferential treatment for illegal immigrants” (Hotline reporting, 9/28).
Austin American-Statesman’s Embry writes, “It’s worth noting” that state Sen. Brian Birdwell (R) “filed a bill to repeal that in-state tuition law just this year” in the state Senate, where Dewhurst is the presiding office. The bill “was referred” to the Higher Education Cmte. “It was heard but never emerged” from that cmte.
Also, in 2005, with Dewhurst as the presiding officer of the state Senate for the session, the state Legislature passed a bill “which clarified a number of issues related to who should be considered a state resident for the purposes of in-state tuition. Among the provisions clarified by the bill was the one allowing in-state tuition for the children of illegal immigrants” — provided that the student had been in TX for three years and declared an intent to apply for permanent residency in the U.S. The state Senate passed that bill 29-0. “In other words,” the state Senate “had a clear opportunity to change the law while Dewhurst” was LG and it chose not to (9/27).
Lots going on in all that. Birdwell is a genuine 9-11 hero; he was at the Pentagon that day and suffered severe burns. He has become a standout conservative in the Texas Senate. As Lt. Gov., Dewhurst presides over the state Senate and is constitutionally the most powerful officer in the state (Gov. Perry has become the state’s most powerful governor largely by getting all 29 elected statewide officers to work from the same page, and by helping build and empower the Texas GOP from the grassroots up). Dewhurst’s change of position does seem to constitute a flip, but, er, at least it’s a flip in the right direction…