We address this to those State Reps that might be a bit on the fence on this one, ones who- in the past- have probably supported Joe Straus, but might have some frustration with the way the sessions have been run- especially this last one, where the Democrats were more successful passing bills than the GOP majority.
It’s really very simple, folks: take a look at the last three elections cycles and look what’s happened. Look at the number of ‘Good-old-Boy’ long-timers that have gone over the hill; voluntarily or otherwise. Brian McCall, Burt Solomon, Vicki Truitt, Tommy Merritt, Jerry Madden, Jim Pitts, Linda Harper-Brown, Dan Branch, Diane Patrick; just to name a few. Look at the ‘principled conservative’ block and how their numbers grow each cycle- and that very few are giving in the siren song of the ‘go-along’ leadership. And how leadership efforts to oust the most troublesome met with utter failure- and how they lost a number of ‘easy holds’ (Bennett Ratliff, Linda Harper-brown, Diane Patrick). Even when the leadership friend’s DID hold on, it was often by single digits.
It’s simply a matter of time before continued victories of ‘principled conservatives’ over leadership/lobbyist interests put that block over the top and they can dominate the GOP caucus entirely. The question is, what kind of Speaker candidate will they put up then; one who will completely gut the current chairs and committees and take out the type of retribution seen in years past?
What we have is a very unique opportunity this time in Scott Turner, simply because of the type of person Scott is. He is a man of gentle but firm persuasion, not one into arm-twisting and vote-buying. His basic demand for a POSITIVE campaign for Speaker alone should convince you he is a different kind of leader, one unlike the House has seen in over a generation. It is actually a chance to tamp down the inner divisions of the GOP block to mere ‘friendly competitions’, as opposed to the multi-million dollar knock-down, drag-outs it has become. To return the dealmaking to the near super-majority of the GOP in the House, rather than the Democrat minority and the handful of most moderate Republicans that led to 52% of the bills passed having Democrat authors.
It is time to make a change; not out of retribution, but out of the need to advance an agenda set by the Republican majority. To move bills forward on merit, not political theater. To have more serious and meaningful committee hearings and votes on the floor of the House. Scott can give us that- and the more moderate Republicans will NOT lose out, it they are willing to return to negotiating with the other members of their Party, rather than with the Democrats as they did this last session (over half of the bills passed were Democrat authored).