In the 2014 Republican primary in Texas, in many of the races we have lots of good choices. Our job is to pick the best candidates and tell you why. We will roll out endorsements on a weekly basis.
Land Commissioner - George P. Bush
If anyone is curious about the face of the next generation of Republican leadership, they need look no further than George P. Bush. Bush, who is the son of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, grandson of President George H. W. Bush and nephew of President George W. Bush, has finally made what most have considered the inevitable entry into the political arena. The Texas-born George P. has a resume that is impressive, to say the least; it includes work as a teacher, attorney, civic leader, and founder of two companies. Did we mention that he is a military veteran? Well, he is -a naval officer- and won a Joint Service Commendation Medal (among other decorations) for his meritorious service in Afghanistan to prove it. TCR takes pride in giving a robust endorsement for this rising star who, in our opinion, can go as far as he wants to go. Today, Texas needs George P. Bush; but we can imagine a day in the not-too-distant future when the nation will come calling.
State Representative District 150 - Debbie Riddle
Some elected officials are stars within their districts, they take care of their constituents, vote right and do exactly what is expected of them. Others though, go far beyond what is expected, causing their stars to shine well beyond the borders of their own districts. Debbie Riddle is a perfect example of the latter. She has been a standard-bearer for conservative issues ranging from border security to the Second Amendment to Voter ID. So much so in fact, that she has been featured favorably on Fox News and ridiculed by the likes of The Daily Kos, and the New York Daily News. The fact that Debbie Riddle is a target of the liberal establishment in places as far flung as California and New York should be a good indicator that she is effective right here in Texas. There is nothing wrong doing what is expected, but when voters have a conservative leader representing their district, they should fight to keep her. For that reason, TCR offers an unequivocal endorsement for State Representative Debbie Riddle's bid for re-election to continue representing the citizens of House District 150.
District Judge 246th District Court - Charley Prine
In the race for the 246th District Court, TCR recommends a vote for Judge Charley Prine. TCR's endorsement of Judge Prine is based on both his judicial experience as well as a 20+ year distinguished legal career. As Associate Judge of the 309th District Court, Judge Prine has proven himself to be effective, fair and considerate of all who appear in the court and there is no doubt that he will apply those same impeccable standards to the 246th District Court, and he is a life long Republican.
District Judge 247th District Court - M. L. Walker
With nearly seven years' judicial experience, Judge M.L. Walker is by far the most qualified to take the reins of the 247th Family Court from retiring Judge Bonnie Crane Hellums. With her history, experience and working knowledge of the Court, Judge Walker will be ready to run the Court from day one. Best of all, Judge Walker has a solid conservative record and a reputation for treating all parties with respect and understanding, which is a critical quality in a family court judge.
District Judge 311th District Court - Alicia Franklin
In the race for the 311th District (Family) Court, TCR offers an enthusiastic endorsement of Alicia Franklin, who faces an embattled incumbent accused of ethical and legal impropriety. The political consequences notwithstanding, this is one of those instances where we must get our own house in order and do the right thing, first and foremost, simply because it is the right thing for our community who relies on our Family Courts during some of the most difficult times a family can face. Alicia Franklin has the experience, the qualifications, the temperament and above all the untarnished reputation that make her the most qualified to lead the 311th District Court in the future.
County Criminal Court at Law No. 10 - Dan Jeffrey Spjut
Dan Spjut has already had one successful career in criminal justice, it is a career with the Houston Police Department that spanned 27 years and one in which he rose to the rank of Lieutenant. While working full time at HPD, Dan was also a full time student, earning both his Bachelors and Law Degrees at night. Dan Spjut's work ethic, unique law enforcement perspective and lifelong commitment to law and order and his real courtroom experience make him the best choice for Judge of County Criminal Court at Law No 10.
TCR Endorsements, Part 1
TCR Endorsements, Part 2
TCR Endorsements, Part 3
Texas Lt. Governor Debate, Mostly Left Wing Panel Asks Questions Out Of Liberal Playbook
Will we ever learn? In Monday's debate, the panel was mostly liberal journalists, with the exception of Texas Tribune's Ross Ramsey. So guess what? The liberals asked about liberal issues, let's see, end of life, abortion, the decriminalization of marijuana, creationism, a 30 year old bankruptcy, a dinner out during the session, guns on campus, women's health, and who created Wendy Davis?
So what was missing? No real discussion on transportation, water, medical reform, and property tax relief. This is what happens when we let the liberal media tell us who gets to be on the debate panel. If it looked familiar, remember the circus that was the 2012 Republican presidential debates.
Did we learn anything of value about the candidates? No way, TCR calls it a waste of time.
Wendy Davis: An Embellished Biography Embarrasses Her Allies
With the release of last week's Bio-gate by liberal columnist/reporter Wayne Slater of the Dallas Morning News and Co-Author of Bush's Brain, the bloom is off the rose.
What is disturbing to TCR is that Wendy's story was good without embellishments. She was a single mother who had it tough, and who was then married and able to finish her undergraduate program and go to Harvard Law.
But Wendy added things or left things out that make her look as a woman who had a male partner (husband) to help. Her second husband kept her child while she was in law school, and got custody of their child. Her second husband cashed out his 401(k) account and took out a loan to pay for her schooling. She left him soon after finishing law school.
So instead of a feminist inspiration, she is another example of liberals who tell half stories. Wendy has proven we cannot trust what she tells us, the worst trait for a politician.
There is NOTHING embellished in Greg Abbott's biography and you CAN trust him.
JINSA Review Evaluates Iran Interim Deal
And Finds It Wanting
TCR Comment: JINSA, a respected national security organization has detailed the problems with the Iran nuclear deal and outlines what we should be seeking.
"Preventing a nuclear-capable Iran remains the most pressing national security challenge facing the United States and its Middle East allies, and a permanent diplomatic settlement that fully addresses international security concerns remains the preferred means to achieve this objective. We judge this outcome to be more remote and harder to achieve now than before the P5+ 1 countries and Iran signed an interim deal in Geneva, known as the Joint Plan of Action (JPA), which went into effect January 20, 2014... . We believe the JPA is deeply flawed because the combination of interim and final concessions it contains undermine the effort to prevent a nuclear Iran."
"Our previous report... spelled out six principles to which any deal must conform to protect U.S. national security interests. To be acceptable, we argued any deal must require Iran to resolve outstanding international concerns, adhere to international legal requirements and roll back its nuclear program. It would also need to put in place a strict inspections regime and clear deadlines for Iran to uphold its commitments. Finally, we made the case that to obtain such a deal the United States would have to negotiate and enforce it from a position of strength, to make it unmistakably plain to Tehran that it has the most to lose from the failure of diplomacy.
"The JPA fails to meet the standards we had previously laid out, both in the interim and the long term. It allows Iran to retain enough key aspects of its nuclear program to continue progress toward nuclear weapons capability - including its 3.5 percent enriched uranium stockpile, existing enrichment capacity and ability to improve the performance of its extant centrifuges - and even authorizes it to construct an additional nuclear facility. But the JPA does not require Iran to address its unresolved legal obligations. Instead, it implicitly recognizes Iran's proclaimed right to enrich in practice, undermining the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and envisions a time limit on any Iranian concessions. Worse still, it suggests that after the condition of a final deal lapse, Iran will 'be treated in the same manner as that of any' state, as if it had not pursued nuclear weapons in defiance of international law or sponsored global terrorism for more than three decades. Finally, the JPA weakens U.S. leverage to pursue even this flawed long-term deal, both by beginning to unravel the existing international sanctions regime and by seeking to limit Congress' power to pass additional measures. Overall, this does not buy time for the P5+ 1 to negotiate a final deal. Instead, the JPA makes it possible for Iran to progress toward undetectable nuclear weapons capability without even violating the agreement.
"These shortcomings complicate prevention of a nuclear Iran, undermine the nonproliferation regime and contribute to regional instability. To stave off these risks, the United States must now do the best it can with what time remains to protect its security interests, as well as those of its allies in the region.
"... (T)his task force continues to believe the optimal outcome would be an Iran with no enrichment capability whatsoever. Because the JPA precludes this, and contains the flaws outlined above, some task force members believe the deal is unacceptable. These task force members believe the United States must still press for a final agreement permitting Iran to keep only a civilian nuclear program but no enrichment facilities or capabilities ...
"Other task force members believe the JPA, while not the best solution, provides an opportunity to test Iran's true intentions definitively with an endgame proposal. By offering Iran much of what is claims to want - civilian nuclear power and enrichment - while also containing the most stringent possible limits to preclude nuclear weapons capability, U.S. negotiators can give Iran the chance to prove whether or not it is serious in its declared peaceful aims ...
"All task force members agree an acceptable final deal must require Iran to meet all of its international legal obligations, come clean about its past nuclear weapons research, and work and accept a much more intrusive inspections regime.
"Given that the JPA grants Iran greater concessions than it extracts, and considering how close Iran is to nuclear weapons capability, it is critical such a final permanent deal which fulfills our principles be put in place as soon as possible, preferably before the JPA's six-month interim expires. Achieving this will require the United States to use all forms of leverage available to induce Iran to accept it, including intensified sanctions, credible military preparations, tighter cooperation with regional allies, and clear support for a potential Israel strike.
"The United States should move immediately to impose new sanctions and consider even tougher actions against Iran if no acceptable final is agreement is in place 180 days after the JPA's formal implementation on January 20. At that time, the United States should do nothing that would impinge upon Israel's ability to decide what actions it must take at that time, and indeed should support Israel if it takes military action."
TCR on the Air
Red, White & Blue featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland, liberal commentator David Jones and moderator Linda Lorelle on Fridays at 7:30 pm on PBS Houston Channel 8.1, replaying Saturdays at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 8.1, Mondays at 11:30 pm on Channel 8.2 and on the web at www.houstonpbs.org.
This week: State of the Union review
Next week: Guest U.S. Representative Ted Poe
Coming soon: Mayor Annise Parker and Harris County Judge Ed Emmett
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About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his fifteenth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last twelve years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. As a public service for the last 10 years, Gary has published election guides for the GOP primary, general elections and city elections, all with the purpose of assisting conservative candidates. Gary is also in his twelfth year of co-hosting Red, White and Blue on PBS Houston. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.