AUSTIN – This week’s Texas Public Policy Foundation forum began on a slightly disappointing note: Legendary NFL player and coach Mike Ditka’s anticipated keynote address would not happen. ESPN duty had called.

The TPPF folks noted that state Rep. Scott Turner (R-TX-Rockwall and Collin Counties) had agreed to step in and deliver the keynote.

Confession time: I knew very little about Rep. Turner. Look him up and you’ll quickly learn that he spent 8 years as a defensive back in the NFL, playing for the Washington Redskins, the San Diego Chargers and the Denver Broncos. He’s also a motivational speaker and relative newcomer to the Texas legislature.

But enough preamble. Here is the keynote that Rep. Turner delivered Wednesday. I don’t think anyone was missing Coach Ditka. Texas Republicans have a rising conservative star on their hands.

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