After hearing John Carona speaking at a candidate forum (the FIRST I ever heard of where recording was NOT allowed- except for one ‘official’ recorder. Surprised to find it was those putting the forum on that requested this; never seen a group NOT want themselves videotaped doing such; transparency of pubicly-attended forums should ALWAYS be foremost), we feel it necessary to respond to some arrogant outlandishness from him on several points.
The first is to try to give him an outside-of-Austin clue: You DON’T claim to being a big conservative while bragging about the volume of bills you passed. REAL conservatives know this- MANY BILL MEANS MORE BIG GOVERNMENT. Just because someone with an ‘R’ by their name writes it or supports it, does not make a piece conservative legislation. Especially things like the franchise tax, which Carona supported.
Also clueless was Carona’s contempt for ‘scorecards’, which he dismisses as the desires of a few people on a handful of bills. These scorecards reflect the results from scores of bills each session and the opinions of multiple organizations, some pretty large. Our composite of scorecards lists three of the best conservative organizations- fiscal and social- and represent at least 50 key bills in just this session. There are other groups- and a longer history of mediocre to poor performance by Carona as far as MANY conservative groups listed here are concerned (he does better in the social areas than the fiscal). These score cards are based on HIS VOTES- and that is what he is sent down there to do. He feels he doesn’t need to pay attention to them and the organizations behind them: the special-interest lobbyists who line his coffers instruct him on how to vote. Check out his sources of money for the 2012 cycle alone, as reported by VoteSmart: including $176K from lobbyists and $86K from payday lenders. In principle-based voting vs. special interest lobby voting, it’s clear where Carona’s interests lie.
But let’s hammer the biggest nail in this coffin. Rice university publishes an objective assessment of each legislative session, establishing an indexing of all 978 nonlopsided bills and coming up with a conservative to liberal ranking of all legislators. To quote the article in the Texas Tribune:
“There was a significant gap between the Republicans and the Democrats, but John Carona of Dallas was the least conservative Republican senator, ”
Bottom line: those scorecards have John Carona’s voting record pegged correctly and he doesn’t like it one bit. ‘Fess up, John; you are now the most liberal GOP State Senator by your own hand. John represents a pretty moderate district, so even running on his actual record as one of the least conservative GOP senators might actually be fine for him. But he needs to be honest to his voters- and honest with himself.
But if John is far removed from reality that he TRULY believes he is a conservative, then he needs to be removed from office. And Don Huffines is the man to do it.