Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Another Texas Shining Star
by Pa Rock
Not every Texas politician is as mean-spirited as Rick Perry or as egomaniacal and ruthless as Ted Cruz. A few, admittedly a rare few, have hearts and brains which they aren’t afraid to put to use for the benefit of the rest of society – and not just the privileged elite.
The late governor, Ann Richards, was a shining star in the Lone Star state. Molly Ivins, a journalist and good friend of Governor Richards, never ran for political office, but she was a constant burr under the saddle blankets of many Texas elected officials. The governor and the reporter never got any warm fuzzies from the good ole boys who made up the political power base of Texas.
Wendy Davis, a state senator from Fort Worth, stood up to the Texas political elite when she staged an 11-hour filibuster in order to block a vote on a draconian anti-abortion bill this past summer. Her effort helped to run the clock out on the legislative session, forcing Governor Perry to call a second special session so that he could impose his fundamentalist religious views on the state. Senator Davis is now running for governor of the Lone Star state.
A pair of young Hispanic twin brothers are also rising stars in Texas politics. Julian Castro is the Mayor of San Antonio and was the keynote speaker at last year’s Democratic National Convention. His brother, Joaquin Castro, is a former member of the Texas legislature and it now a first-term congressman.
Senator Davis and both Castro brothers are graduates of Harvard Law School. All three are emblematic of a fresh breeze blowing through Texas politics.
Today that breeze got a little stronger when a Bexar County (San Antonio) Court-at-Law judge, Carlo Key, announced that he is leaving the Republican Party and will run for re-election as a Democrat. Actually, Judge Key said that the Republican Party had left him.
In making his announcement, Judge Key lamented, “I cannot tolerate a political party that demeans Texans based on their sexual orientation, the color of their skin, or their economic status.” The judge added, “For too long the Republican Party has been at war with itself. Rational Republican beliefs have given way to ideological character assassination. Pragmatism and principle have been overtaken by pettiness and bigotry.”
He also took a swipe at the recent GOP government shutdown. Judge Key said, “I cannot place my name on the ballot of the political party that is proud to destroy the lives of hundreds of thousands of federal workers over the vain attempt to repeal a law that would provide health care for millions of people throughout our country.”
Judge Key declared, “My principles have led me to the Democratic Party, and my only hope is that more people of principle will follow me.”
Amen to that, Judge Key. Amen.
Judge Key was joined at the news conference where he made his announcement by future President Joaquin Castro.