MON brief 12.6.21

Welcome to the brief. If you were forwarded this email, be sure to sign up (hint: there’s a button below).

Today’s Stories

MATT RINALDI, Chairman of the Texas GOP, said in an interview over the weekend that a special session will likely soon be called to deal with vaccine mandates in Texas.

Before Rinaldi’s remarks, Governor Abbott stated lawsuits against the Biden administration were sufficient and that Texans need not worry about vaccine mandates.

Tell that to the Texans losing their jobs to vaccine mandates.

As anticipated, if a special session is called, it won’t be the first or second time in the past year that protective maneuvers (see: CRT, election integrity) were lauded only to be deemed insufficient. This is a predictable consequence of the Texas GOP’s desire to do the bare minimum on any issue of concern to its base.

Additionally, if a special is called, the fourth for four theme (days and items) is in order. Another three items that could be included to round out the four:

  • Abolish the M&O property tax

  • Fix election law SB1 screw-ups

  • Tax money wires to Mexico & S. America

A January special session gives Abbott about a month to see how Omicron shakes out. At this point, it appears that the latest variant of COVID-19 will be widespread but weak. Still, he’ll have the excuse to poll and see how tightly scooped a session he can get away with.

Democrats ought to return for the special in January to grandstand, in contrast to whatever the GOP proposes, over the grid failure of 2021.  Also, don’t underestimate their willingness to take the bait on forcing jabs.

Dan Patrick and Dade Phelan are in a public war of words regarding the grid.  Neither has covered himself in glory, but Phelan’s committee chair is the one who became an industry lobbyist.

Speaking of the grid, see the next item.

TED CRUZ is pitching BITCOIN mining as a (partial?!?) solution to Texas’ electricity grid challenges. Maybe/maybe not. Either way, two and a half cheers for novelty.

The basic proposition (explained in detail in the linked piece) is to sell surplus wind and natural gas power to BITCOIN miners at fixed prices.  This would provide essential price support to keep those sources online when demand surges (e.g., the February ‘21 freeze or an equivalent heatwave); BITCOIN miners can easily shut down their rigs and sell their power to the general public.

It’s unclear to non-electrical engineers how this would impact the grid during a crisis but monetizing surplus natural gas/wind via BITCOIN mining is an excellent example of how Texas can win the economic war against woke Wall St. (AC)

JEFF YOUNGER has announced a campaign for the Texas House. Younger is running in District 63, based in Denton county.

Younger came to public attention due to efforts to stop his ex-wife from deranged efforts to sexually “transition” the couple’s now nine-year-old son. Tragically, Younger’s efforts fell short when a Democrat judge awarded Younger’s ex-wife full custody.

Given the backdrop, Younger’s campaign can be characterized as a last-ditch effort to save his son. Godspeed. (AC)

LATINX isn’t working for Democrats.

The admission is one of several truth tellings that Democrat operatives are working to beat into the thick skulls of their electeds up and down the ballot ahead of 2022.

Another reality of the 2022 cycle that Democrats should come to terms with is the issue of life.

Manipulated polls that avoid the issue of heartbeats and pain felt in the womb won’t save Democrats at the ballot box. They ought to know this after 2016 and 2020.

Compounding their pain, in 2022, they won’t be able to run against the bad orange man. This tactic was proven ineffective in Virginia, and it’s been proven ineffective in Texas. So was running on the issue of January 6.

Hit the Links

More than half of Houstonians who died from COVID had diabetes

If we legalize it, we can tax it = flawed

ISDs continue requiring face masks despite the governor’s ban

Mark Cuban buys entire Texas town

Thanks for reading

Push Junction grows through word of mouth. Please consider sharing this post with someone who might appreciate it.

Share Push Junction

THU brief 12.2.21

Welcome to the brief. If you were forwarded this email, be sure to sign up (hint: there’s a button below). Upon further review, the first nine days of this month are a palindrome (but none as pretty as the first and second).

Today’s Stories

GEORGE P. BUSH has released lists of “South” and West Texas supporters. In no particular order, here are some observations.

  • Former State Representative Doug Miller praises P’s “integrity.” Miller, who lost the HD-73 seat to Kyle Biedermann in 2016, ended that race by attempting to imply...really bad stuff.  So bad that we don’t want to repeat it.

    Utterances of integrity from Miller ring hollow. See the following endorsement for “integrity” and gross sex stuff.

  • Senator Charles Schwertner (i.e., this guy).

  • Commissioner Chuck Statler, of Taylor county (i.e., Abilene), former president of the County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas (Read: taxpayer-funded lobbyists.)

  • Ambassador Sichan Siv was, apparently, a state department official under 41 and a U.N. official under Dubya. He has a distinct spook vibe, and if not an explicit “company man,” he’s deep state of some sort.

    According to a 2008 interview with Texas Monthly, Siv came to the U.S. from Cambodia in the late 1970s.  Mr. Siv might have a compelling life story, but we find it difficult to trust anyone who came out of that time and region who’s politically aligned with the Bushes.

Some of the messaging accompanying Bush endorsements come at Governor Abbott’s expense. The above endorsements came alongside one from the National Border Patrol Council insisting:

We must secure the border immediately, restore law and order, and stop Joe Biden’s radical federal overreach in our state.

The border was mentioned in four of the endorsements. Read you loud and clear P. Bush, Abbott has failed to secure the border.

In a radio interview this morning, Bush suggested Congressman Louie Gohmert joining the race would bring comic relief. It will undoubtedly be a more exciting race with Gohmert, but the comedic value may come at Bush’s expense if Gohmert bumps the baby Bush into third place. (AC)

JARED PATTERSON is floating a trial balloon aimed at tossing cold water on the escalating drumbeat for a special session to deal with vaccine mandates leading to Texans losing their jobs.

Suggesting this isn’t an emergency, one that ought to be left to the courts, is clownish. The timing of Patterson’s test is telling and appears to be linked to the Governor.

Patterson’s gambit was run alongside a joint filing of an amicus brief by Texans for Responsible Government a new PAC operating with a $1M loan from Michael Porter of Doss, Texas, according to Transparency USA.

The Porter’s are best known for dropping million-dollar donations on Governor Abbott.

WAYNE CHRISTIAN is pushing back against media distortions of recent decisions by the Texas Railroad Commission.

Over the weekend, the Houston Chronicle published an editorial claiming the railroad commission allowed natural gas producers to escape weatherization requirements by paying $150.  This sleight of hand conflates unrelated decisions, which Christian explains in detail in the piece linked above.

While there are many grounds to criticize the Governor, Lite guv, Speaker, and legislature over the grid, charges against the Railroad commission aren’t being leveled in good faith.

This dispute with the media comes at a politically advantageous time for Christian, whose Railroad commission seat is on the ballot this cycle. (AC)

The TEXAS GOP has announced a candidate recruitment drive across South Texas, including Jim Wells County. The perfect irony would be Jim Wells county flipping by 87 votes. (AC)

FOUR TEXAS REPUBLICANS, in Congress, have joined Nancy Pelosi in voting to establish a national vaccination database.

Michael Burgess, Dan Crenshaw, John Carter, and Michael McCaul were the offenders.  This isn’t the first time those four have had a conflict with conservatives. It’s unlikely to be the last, either.

Pat Fallon and Van Taylor, who have come under fire in recent months, voted no. (AC)

Thanks for reading

Push Junction grows through word of mouth. Please consider sharing this post with someone who might appreciate it.

Share Push Junction

Wed brief 12.1.21

Enjoy the palindrome everyone

Welcome to the brief. If you were forwarded this email, be sure to sign up (hint: there’s a button below).

Today’s Stories

TEXANS FOR VACCINE CHOICE called for a fourth special session yesterday.

The organization joins the state GOP and 26 members of the Texas House in calling for an immediate special session to stop employees in Texas from being fired in the coming months over vaccine mandates.

While they are failing in some legal venues, federal and private mandates persist and continue to spread.

The state of Missouri recently secured a ruling against the Biden administration Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding the forced vaccination of hospital workers.

Another case, including Montana and Louisiana as plaintiffs, blocked the mandate in all states. Unfortunately, this isn’t going to stop employers from firing Texans for exercising their right to bodily autonomy.

As pressure on Abbott grows (on this and other issues), the prospect of another special session being called does increase exponentially so if his polling numbers sag below 50% between now and the primary.

SCOTUS is taking up its second significant abortion brief in as many months.

Even abortion advocates anticipate this case will end with an adverse ruling to the cornerstone of their twisted policy agenda.

While morality has never been on the side of the pro-aborts, science is now firmly in opposition as well.  Babies in utero have a heartbeat and feel pain when they are murdered.

No matter how challenging the circumstances precipitating pregnancy, they aren’t the fault of the innocent preborn human who will be tortured and killed. Compounding wrongs doesn’t undo the first one; it just adds a second.

In the face of the likelihood that an adverse ruling is coming, pro-abortion groups are gearing up to whisk would-be mothers across state lines to terminate pregnancies and creating a black market for drugs to induce abortions. 

The pro-life movement in Texas needs to be ready and focused on counteracting these coming battles.

MAYES MIDDLETON has filed for the Senate seat being vacated by Larry Taylor.

If Middleton wins the seat, it will make the Senate marginally more conservative, but it likely won’t be gaining a tour de force conservative.

Middleton was a “bitter ender” for Dennis Bonnen in 2019 and got repeatedly pantsed by Team Phelan in 2021. Nobody should be under any illusions about how Middleton will relate to Dan Patrick in 2023 despite reportedly forcing Taylor out prematurely.

Despite this uncharacteristically assertive start, the three-term representative is likely to revert to his mean an appeasement approach with a solidly conservative voting record.

For his part, Taylor is one of the more complicated political figures in recent memory.  One of the few legislators to understand the school finance system, he spent several sessions moving it in a modestly more pro-taxpayer direction.

But conservative laments about other aspects of Taylor’s record are certainly valid.

CHIP ROY continues his based streak.  Specifically, the congressman is now calling for shutting down the federal government to stop Biden’s vaccine mandate.

We favor shutting down large segments of the federal government permanently.

Hit the Links

Hispanics support hardline immigration policies

Buttigieg can’t and won’t win in 2024 (or ever)

A not-so-super superintendent?

Thanks for reading

Push Junction grows through word of mouth. Please consider sharing this post with someone who might appreciate it.

TUE brief 11.30.21

Welcome to the brief. If you were forwarded this email, be sure to sign up (hint: there’s a button below).

Today’s Stories

UT AUSTIN continues giving the Texas Tribune fits.

Yes, you just read that last sentence correctly. This development should be encouraged.

At immediate issue is a deranged “antiracism” study that targeted white preschoolers (yes, you read that correctly).  To their credit, university leaders stopped its funding once it came to their attention.  Yet this didn’t stop the Tribune’s Kate McGhee from publishing an editorial thinly disguised as a “news story” about alleged threats to academic freedom.

Sticking with Ms. McGhee, several days earlier, she lamented the university’s refusal to bend to the cancel culture mob over comments made (admittedly, in poor taste) by the namesake of its school for public relations.

While the university remains 98% left-wing, that’s down from 99.5% a few years ago.  That change seems small. For the Tribune to act as an ideological enforcer, however, suggests they fear this trend continuing.

One suggestion for the University: At some point, y’all should take a second look at that sweetheart polling deal y’all’ve given the Tribune for the past decade.

Speaking of the Texas Tribune and its role in the political status quo, see the next item. (AC)

The TEXAS HOSPITAL ASSOCIATION is holding its annual conference in February and among the keynote speakers are the Tribune’s Evan Smith and Ross Ramsey.

The oof load is large and looks a lot like influence peddling.

At a minimum, THA is likely paying for Smith and Ramsey’s travel and expenses.  These two ain’t staying at Motel 6 or eating at Denny’s.

If Smith and Ramsey are being paid “honorariums” for their appearances (unknowable but possible), the sum could easily fall in the five-figure range.

Sinatra said it best. (AC)

The TEXAS ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL BOARDS (TASB) is arguing that individual board members shouldn’t be allowed to criticize board decisions in public

An example of the sort of censorship favored by TASB recently occurred in Round Rock ISD.

Yesterday’s coverage of the Texas Freedom Caucus’s efforts to get local ISD’s to leave TASB was timely.  This latest disclosure is another example of why such a push is a no-brainer. (AC)

Hit the Links

Is the government subsidizing woke comics?

Most Voters Want CEOs To Focus On Business

Schools with a mask mandate not that different than schools without

Thanks for reading

Push Junction grows through word of mouth. Please consider sharing this post with someone who might appreciate it.

Mon brief 11.29.21

Welcome to the brief. If you were forwarded this email, be sure to sign up (hint: there’s a button below).

Today’s Stories

LOUIE GOHMERT has pulled the trigger on an Attorney General campaign.

From the perspective of Gohmert’s political future, this seems like a moonshot but one that will serve a couple useful functions.

The primary utility of Gohmert’s campaign is that, it will either prolong George P. Bush’s career three short months, or deliver a premature Pierce Bush-esque blow. Either outcome gives air of finality to the Bush family’s grip on Texas politics.

Secondarily, Ken Paxton, the as-of-now favorite will have to address allegations no matter how underwhelming being retread by Gohmert. By making the argument that the incumbent can’t win the general election, Gohmert forces Paxton to address head on claims he abused his office to benefit a donor. Ripping the band-aid off in the spring will make Paxton a stronger candidate in the fall.

But for Bush being the establishment pick, Gohmert might have been the 2022 equivalent to Barry Smitherman as it stands he cleared Krause and enters a tug-of-war with Bush, a race that won’t fail to entertain.

Related: Krause bails on AG bid (stay tuned for Soros dump)

The TEXAS FREEDOM CAUCUS is pressuring local ISD’s to leave the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) over a variety of misdeeds.

While the so-called “Freedom caucus” is frequently (and correctly) derided, making TASB play political defense is always a good idea.

More please.

MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY isn’t running. Duh.

McConaughey seems like a good dude and a shrewd public relations animal. For these reasons and the way he made Beto sweat he deserves a tip of the hat. Happy trails Matt.

GAS PRICES, headed into the holiday season, spiked and so did stories about gas prices.

  • The Secretary of Energy, when asked last week, could not state, “How many barrels of oil does the U.S. consume per day? The media would have raked a GOP appointee over the coals for not providing an answer.

Hit the Links

Houston hospitals not properly disclosing costs

Abbott, West, and Patrick file for re-election

Pot legalization benefits Democrats harms Republicans

Rep. Crockett runing for EBJ’s Congressional seat

Thanks for reading

Push Junction grows through word of mouth. Please consider sharing this post with someone who might appreciate it.

Share Push Junction

Loading more posts…