Friday, May 25, 2007

"If Dewhurst wants to be Governor, he can’t sell out and sell off Texas."

Dewhurst's Dilemma, the Trans-Texas Corridor

May 25, 2007

Linda Curtis, Guest Columnist
The Weatherford Democrat
Copyright 2007

The Governor’s spin machine is working it today, to make it appear that he’s trying to work out a compromise on the most treacherous issue this session, putting a 2 year moratorium on the Trans-Texas Corridor.

Make no mistake. Rick Perry has, so far, successfully thwarted the clear will of a super-majority of ordinary Texans and the Texas legislature, who do not want the Trans-Texas trade Corridor.

The only question remaining is where Lt. Governor David Dewhurst will land.

Dewhurst appointed Sen. Tommy Williams (R-Woodlands) to chair the Conference Committee that is deliberating on the hot potato bill of the session, SB 792. SB 792 is the second, and last, chance for a Corridor moratorium in the 2007 legislative session.

Lt. Gov. Dewhurst is being deluged with phone calls, faxes and emails today, asking that he instruct Senator Williams to do the right thing and allow Rep. Lois Kolkhort’s (R-Brenham) Amendment 13, to be attached to SB 792. Amendment 13 closes a loophole that, if not closed, will allow for the Corridor to proceed.

State Representatives are also hearing from their constituents. If SB 792 comes to them with Amendment 13, they’re being asked for vote for it. If Amendment 13 is not included, they’re being asked to kill it. The grassroots coalition of groups doing this, led by, are calling this, “The Citizen’s Veto”.

David Stall, co-founder of CorridorWatch says, “I’m sure Governor Perry would like this (SB 792) to become law without amendment 13 so he can blame the legislature when it fails to stop the Trans Texas Corridor. If he can’t get his way this bill may never come out of committee. Either way, the overwhelmingly clear will of the people will have been dismissed in a manner that is an affront to democracy.”

Chris Hammell, one of the founders of the Blackland Coalition, the farmer fight-back organization in the richest farmland in Texas, the blackland prairie throughout central Texas says, “As a life-long Republican who just became an independent, I can tell you this. Governor Perry continues to dig a hole for the Republican Party and spur on a populist independent revolt, the likes of which hasn’t been seen in this state since the early part of the last century. If Dewhurst decides to thumb his nose at the people, the Republican Party will lose many more supporters, folks just like me, and the independent movement will rise up out of the ashes.”

Linda Curtis, a founder of Independent Texans, one of the organizations that’s worked the hardest to unite the rural, urban and suburban groups fighting both the Corridor and the urban freeway-to-tollway conversions says, “Our rural, urban and suburban coalition, despite Perry and his allies’ attempts to split us up, has only strengthened after seeing the utter treachery of the people happening right under Dewhurst’s nose.

Only Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst can come forward now to instruct the conference committee chair that he appointed, to do the right thing. He wants to be Governor, or so we’re told, but he can’t sell out and sell off Texas and do that. That is David Dewhurst’s dilemma.”

Well over two-thirds of members of both the Texas House and the Texas Senate voted for HB 1892, their first crack at a Corridor/Toll moratorium. However, that bill was vetoed by Gov. Perry, and the Senate has indicated that they will not seek to override on HB 1892, due to what they perceive as a fatal flaw in the bill. The second and last chance is SB 792.

However, if SB 792 is ditched, the populist coalition may decide press forward with a move to override the Governor. Stay tuned and don’t be confused in a purposefully confusing situation!

Linda Curtis, of Independent Texans - Austin, may be reached at (512) 535-0989. Visit the Independent Texans Web site at

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