LCRP FAILS TO BACK TURNER, ADOPTS ALTERNATIVE RESOLUITON

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January 6, 2015, was the Liberty County Republican Party's quarterly meeting (Video provided below). RLC members were in attendance as well as Tea party activists and other grassroots members. A resolution to back Scott Turner for Speaker of the Texas House was made by the precinct chair of Pct. 17, Brian Smith and seconded by precinct chair of Pct. 30, Sherial Lawson. Debate was allowed on the motion and it failed to pass 8/4. An alternate resolution was proposed by Vice Chairman Klint Bush to back a 'conservative' republican to lead the house and to hold Representative John Otto to that vote and following through that whomever he chose did in fact live up to that label. This resolution passed 8/4.

It was noteworthy that Representative John Otto was in attendance, a rarely seen sight but for election season or when pushing for support on bills of concern. While one would expect him to defend Straus and why he makes for a better candidate, Representative Otto took the road of bashing Turner. This is of no surprise to most grassroots, as Straus leaves little to defend, so it makes a much easier case to attack the competitor. Liberty County Republican Party did achieve something last evening to be proud of; debate and open discussion and at least acknowledgment of grassroots and their concerns. For that, the Chairman, Ken Coleman, should be thanked. 

One item that grassroots activists could use some brushing up on for future meetings is parliamentary rules. While most of the meeting ran smoothly there were out of order responses from Vice Chairwoman Terri Bivins (an employee of Rep, Otto). When Precinct Chair Yolanda Cazares, Pct. 23 was making her support for the resolution.  Vice Chairwoman Bivins interrupted her and began her own speech. When Ms. Cazares tried to retain her right to speak she was cut off by Ms. Bivins who claimed she had the floor and was told not to interrupt her. Of course, Ms. Bivins was never given the floor, it had be taken, out of order by her. While these were only small issues that often occur and can't be helped at times, grassroots and party members should study their Roberts Rules to be more effective.

In the end, it was a welcome surprise to see open discussion on an important issue covered. Hopefully, the party begins to engage its members' concerns more often. It certainly is a good sign and one needed.

The failed resolution vote was as follows:

Pct.     

3 Klint Bush NO

4 Whittington NO

5 Leon Blackwelder NO

9 Sandra Burnett NO

17 Brian Smith YES

19 Ryan Daniel NO

21 Terri Bivins NO

22 Winn Skidmore NO

23 Yolanda Cazares YES

26 Ray Ansley YES

27 Billie Williams NO

30 Sherial Lawson YES

Endorsement of Scott Turner Resolution

Whereas: The incumbent Speaker, Joe Straus, has allied himself with special interests who benefit from an ever-growing state and an increasingly insular culture in Austin; and,

Whereas: His violations against supporters of the Republican Party in Texas include the following:

•             Supporting the expansion of Medicaid in Texas under Obamacare, stating that “We just can’t say ‘no’” to the federal funds offered.1

•             Abusing the redistricting process to penalize other Republicans for not supporting his election.2

•             Allowing bills to pass which would restrict gun sales and transfers and expand reporting of background checks to the federal government.3

•             Increasing spending in the 2013 biennial budget by 25.8% compared to the previous biennium.4

•             Appointing multiple far-left Democrats to chair critical committees within the Texas House; and,

Whereas: Representative Scott Turner has fought for government transparency, property tax relief, small business owners, the lives of the unborn, and other conservative causes which were demanded by Texas voters in the 2014 elections; and,

Whereas: In the previous session, Representative Turner was statistically the ninth-most conservative member of the House5; and,

Whereas: Representative Turner has announced his intention to run for Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives when its 84th Session convenes in January, 2015.

Resolved: That the [Your County] County Republican Party Executive Committee enthusiastically endorses Scott Turner for Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives; and,

Resolved: That the Chairman of the [Your County] County Republican Party shall certify this resolution, and that he or a representative of the Party shall post this resolution on the county Party’s website and shall send a physical or electronic copy to all Republican Representatives whose districts include parts of [Your County] County within five (5) days of its passage. 

Respectfully submitted,

The language and the vote on the passed resolution was as follows:

3 Klint Bush YES

4 Whittington YES

5 Leon Blackwelder YES

9 Sandra Burnett  NO

17 Brian Smith NO

19 Ryan Daniel YES

21 Terri Bivins YES

22 Winn Skidmore YES

23 Yolanda Cazares -NO

26 Ray Ansley YES

27 Billie Williams YES

30 Sherial Lawson NO

Endorsement of a Conservative Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Resolution

Whereas: The county executive committee of the Liberty County Republican party calls on our State Representative  John Otto to elect a conservative Republican as the next Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives. 

Whereas:  We call on Representative Otto to adhear to the State Republican Platform as read/

The Republican Platform of the 2012 State Convention calls for the Texas House Leadership Caucus –

We call for the Republican members of the Texas House of Representatives to convene in caucus after each November general election to determine by secret ballot their candidate for Speaker of the House, and that rules be instituted to ensure the integrity and security of the secret ballot so that members may vote without risk of retribution by the prevailing party.  We also call for the Republican members of the Texas House to vote as a unified body for their selected speaker candidate when the Legislature convenes in regular session and a vote for speaker is called on the House Floor. 

Resolved: That the Liberty County Republican Party Executive Committee calls on State Representative Otto to represent the conservative constituents of House district 18 by electing a Speaker candidate that will better represent our ideas and values of this House District.

Resolved: That the Chairman of the Liberty County Republican Party shall certify this resolution, and that he or a representative of the Party shall post this resolution on the county Party’s website and shall send a physical or electronic copy to Representative Otto within five (5) days of its passage. 

Respectfully submitted,

Liberty County Republican Party

-Jeff LeBlanc- RLCCD36 Chairman