Democrats Don’t Play Ball

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David Whitley’s stalkers at 9th and Congress can’t help themselves.

Last week, Whitley who was appointed by Governor Greg Abbott in December to be Secretary of State resigned after having his character assassinated over the course of the session by leftist activists, lawmakers, and self-styled reporters. His maligning in the press continues.

Governor Abbott, on the final day of the session, vetoed a handful of seemingly non-controversial measures authored by Senate Democrats a move interpreted as retaliation for his appointee not being confirmed.

Based on the circumstances, and under normal conditions, Whitley should have been confirmed. He wasn’t because while Republicans in Austin are operating under a self-imposed truce Democrats aren’t. This could be seen across a wide array of issues and continues to be highlighted by coverage of Whitley.

In January the secretary of state’s office kicked off a list maintenance effort aimed at removing non-citizens from Texas’ voting rolls, an exercise that is needed and would be unnecessary if past attempts to keep voter rolls updated had not been blocked.

The left, clearly geared up for 2020, fought the effort by going on a subsidized public relations crusade and suing in federal court. Lawmakers and the media demonized Whitley and used the leverage they had, his confirmation. The citizenship review was stopped by a Democrat judge in February.

All of this happened near the outset of the session, providing plenty of time to mend fences and make deals to achieve confirmation. Whitley and Abbott did deal, Democrats did not.

During the session, Whitley went on a goodwill listening tour to alleviate the fears of Senators and election administrators around the state. More meaningfully, in the short term for Democrats, Whitley negotiated a legal settlement acquiescing to most of it not all of the lefts’ demands.

This was Abbott and Whitley playing ball for confirmation, one that didn’t materialize.

It was reported that in the waning days of the session, Abbott put on the full-court press to get Whitley confirmed. When that failed and with the writing on the wall, Abbott issued the aforementioned vetoes, Whitley resigned and Abbott quickly brought him back into the fold by rehiring his former lieutenant.

Yesterday, Democrats in and around Austin, including journalists were chanting the mantra, “elections have consequences.” It should be pointed out that Republicans won every statewide office and still hold sound majorities in both the House and Senate. What about Beto, the failed candidate with notable high energy, likability, money, and promotion 24/7 by a fawning media? He lost. Honest assessments of seat seepage in the House and Senate note that it is par for the course in the redistricting cycle for the majority party to lose seats. This time, the gap wasn’t narrowed nearly as drastically as previous iterations.

The 2018 election results do not foreshadow a poor showing for the GOP in 2020. This was just a useful narrative used to drive the session leftward.

Elections have consequences but the cliche appears to be true for only one party.

When Democrats win they use the power they’ve won to pass laws that move their agenda. Republicans in Texas, and nationally, pay lip service to the agenda but when they hold the reigns balk at advancing the stated agenda of the party.

Abbott and the rest of the Republican delegation have stated that they are for integrity in elections. Given the opportunity, they make social media posts rain when fraud is uncovered and prosecuted. While that conversation is needed, more action is king.

During the regular session, needed reforms to maintain voter rolls and thwart election fraud did not become law. Elections have consequences, poorly run or manipulated elections may have even worse consequences.

It’s likely Whitley’s handling by the Democrats and media bothers Abbott, how much remains to be seen.

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