Ted Cruz Goes Obamacare Trolling and Fails

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Screengrab from CNN via Youtube
Ted Cruz, just doing what he does.

As we rolled up to the fourth anniversary of the Affordable Care Act being signed into law, Sen. Ted Cruz couldn't help but take a shot at the program -- which has had plenty of administrative problems since it was kicked off last fall.

Cruz made a name for himself in the political ring by railing against pretty much everything, but his stunts concerning Obamacare where his particular talent for turning politics into high-stakes trolling and he really found a way to shine. Of course, Cruz is not alone in his dislike of Obamacare, so he -- or whoever manages his social media -- probably assumed that surely everyone would be on board with his little poll. And thus Cruz offered all of us a lesson about the danger of making assumptions. It's never a good idea.


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Green Says He's Backing Law to Protect LGBT Workers, But Not Ready to Sign

Rep. Green says he's down for ENDA, but won't sign yet.
A move to speed up legislation to ban LGBT workplace discrimination is being spearheaded through a letter last week urging President Barack Obama to issue an executive order.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) has been gaining bipartisan support since last year when it passed the Senate.

Our local representative Gene Green, and more than 50 other Democrats didn't bother signing the letter that went out last week which called on the president to hurry up and make the law official, since more than 30 states still allow discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation.

Green, who has not cosponsored EDNA assured us he is backing the law.

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Rick Perry Has No Intention of Going Gently Into the Good Night (But We Already Knew That)

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Screen grab from YouTube.com
Perry can't say no to a presidential bid.
Gov. Rick Perry is wrapping things up. Yeah, he's been the guy with the best hair in Texas politics and has held the governor's seat for a record-setting 14 years, but Perry has obviously decided he hasn't reached the end of the political line quite yet. He popped up on Jimmy Kimmel and now there's a bunch of media chatter about how Perry is (shockingly) probably gearing up for another run at the White House.

Before South By Southwest in Austin became the scene of a tragedy, it was the place to be for pretty much every famous person in the world. (Except Elton John, who went to Beaumont instead, go figure.) Of course, Perry turned up too and he made an appearance on the Jimmy Kimmel during Kimmel's stint in Austin last week.

Perry wasn't at all fazed by the booing he received when he walked out on stage. He handled it, kept on walking and seemed to be silently reminding everyone that his politics are what they are, but just look at all his presidential hair. "There's three places you want to make sure you don't want to be introduced when you're in the business I'm in," Perry said. "a hockey match, a rock concert, and now Jimmy Kimmel's show."

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Reliant Stadium May Be Changing Names, But Texans Still Lining Pockets With Naming Rights Fees

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Photo by Groovehouse
The names may change, but the cash stays the same.
For over a decade, Bob McNair has been given the benefit of the doubt when it comes to his ownership of the Houston Texans. "He brought football back to Houston and he spent a billion dollars to do it," is the familiar refrain. Part of that sentence is true. After the Oilers left, he most certainly brought a team back to Houston, albeit at large part because of LA's unbelievable ineptitude (they were given every opportunity to get the next NFL franchise and fell flat on their faces each time). But, the idea that McNair shelled out $1 billion for the Texans is inaccurate, and he's made more than his share back...and then some.

First, a history lesson. In 1994 there was a real possibility the city could end up with zero pro teams and no new stadia. The Oilers were on their way out the door. The Astros were threatening a move to northern Virginia and the Rockets would soon be playing footsie with Louisville. Yet, within 10 years, the Astros moved into Minute Maid Park, the Rockets into Toyota Center and the Texans were born at Reliant Stadium.

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Greg Abbott's Past Court Fight Against Equal Pay

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Equal pay, what?
Abbott World just can't seem to catch a break lately. It began Sunday with his dancing around the question of his support for the Texas Equal Pay Act and some very damaging evidence emerged earlier this week.

State Senator Wendy Davis held a teleconference with Senator Sylvia Garcia and former TXU senior executive Alex Jimenez on new evidence that Greg Abbott has fought against equal pay for Texas families in the courtroom.

Per her press release: "A full day's hard work is worth a full day's pay no matter your gender," said Senator Wendy Davis. "As Attorney General, Greg Abbott actively fought against equal pay for equal work in the courtroom. Greg Abbott has shown that he would be a governor who just doesn't care that there are more families than ever before relying on two incomes, who can't afford to have one of their paychecks unfairly reduced because one of them is a woman. Texas needs a governor who is singularly focused on making sure our state moves into the future with a 21st Century economy. That begins with the principle of equal pay for equal work."

In 2012, Greg Abbott's office actually fought against equal pay in a court case in which he defended Prairie View A&M University in a lawsuit by a professor who faced pay discrimination.

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Rand Paul Calls Ted Cruz on Bashing Their Party

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Lots of people in the Republican party are fed up with Sen. Ted Cruz, but Sen. Rand Paul is the guy who is doing something about it.

On Monday, the conservative news website, Breitbart News, published an op-ed by Paul, where the senator from Kentucky took Cruz to task -- without ever actually naming the guy who may be beloved by the Tea Party conservatives, but has earned some pretty impressive dislike from the elected members of his own party -- for his hijinks that Paul said have encouraged divisions within the party:

"I don't claim to be the next Ronald Reagan nor do I attempt to disparage fellow Republicans as not being sufficiently Reaganesque. But I will remind anyone who thinks we will win elections by trashing previous Republican nominees or holding oneself out as some paragon in the mold of Reagan, that splintering the party is not the route to victory."
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Texas Democratic Establishment, Houston Chronicle, Dallas Morning News All Endorse Biggest Loser

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photo by TexasRedd
The state Democratic establishment studiously ignoring Kinky Friedman
Ignored by the state Democratic establishment like he was an Al-Qaeda terrorist wearing a bomb coat, Richard "Kinky" Friedman still managed to garner about 185,000 votes in the Democratic primary March 4. Friedman's vote total put him in second place with 37.7 percent of the vote and forced a late May runoff with Joe Hogan (190,200/38.8%).

The elephant-in-the-room question behind the final totals in the down-ballot race for Agriculture Commissioner is how far out of step with Democratic voters the state's top Democrats as well as metropolitan newspapers including Houston Chronicle and Dallas Morning News are. Hugh Asa Fitzsimons, a buffalo producer near San Antonio, got virtually all the public endorsements from both the Democratic hierarchy and other statewide candidates like Lieutenant Governor hopeful Leticia van de Putte, and from the major print newspapers and Democratic-oriented political blogs like Burnt Orange Report. Even Democratic maverick and former Agriculture Commissioner Jim Hightower endorsed Fitzsimons.

Yet with all the votes counted, the heavily endorsed Fitzsimons could only muster 23 percent of the Democratic vote statewide in the three-man race, illustrating beyond all doubt how out of touch with rank-and-file Democrats the state's major media outlets and top Democratic honchos and strategists are.

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Wendy Davis Isn't Running from Obama

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Photo by Allison Hess

Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has been walking a fine line since she became a political star last summer. Davis is trying to become the first Democrat to be elected to statewide office since 1994, and that's no easy task. But if you think Davis plans on steering clear of the president when he comes to town next month, you've got another think coming.

Democrats are gaining some ground in Texas, and people are actually predicting the reliably red Lone Star State will actually be in play in the coming years. But that's in the future. To be a Texas Democrat with a snowball's chance in hell of being elected today, you've got to play to the center, the people who want their guns and their abortion clinics and who might vote Democrat in the booth but hate the guy who is the head of the party, President Barack Obama. In some states, the president's support would be seen as nothing but a good thing, but here it's tricky.


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Ted Cruz in a Psychedelic Video Reading Dr. Seuss

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Still image from "ham" on Youtube.com
The funkiest image of Ted Cruz you ever did see.
If you liked -- or at least couldn't stop watching -- Sen. Ted Cruz read Dr. Seuss in the U.S. Senate, have we got a video treat for you. Before he was influencing the Texas primary without even being on the ballot, he was already irritating his fellow Republicans with a fake filibuster that allowed him to talk a lot and read a classic children's book.

Last fall, Cruz decided to take a stand -- as he is often prone to doing -- and stage a non-filibuster filibuster against the Affordable Care Act. Technically, his hours of holding the Senate captive with talking did not constitute a real Capra-esque filibuster, but that all mattered a little less -- or much more, depending on your view -- when Cruz pulled out a Dr. Seuss classic and commenced to read it aloud.

What Dr. Seuss book would the freshman senator who has made himself remarkably unpopular among the elected leaders of his own party, while simultaneously making himself super popular with the Republicans who want to see the party driven further to the right choose? That classic tale of a character who does not wish to go with the flow and try something new, Green Eggs and Ham, of course.

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Wendy Davis and Texas Primary Results: What We Know Now

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Photo by Philip Steffan
Time to start writing that concession speech.
Wendy Davis v. Greg Abbott.

Let me take the suspense out of this race: Abbott will win in convincing fashion. As I've noted before, there are simply not enough women and minority voters in Texas who will support Davis such that she can win. Indeed, setting aside gender, there aren't enough white Democrats in Texas. What is more, Abbott has three times as much cash on hand as Davis.

Both won their parties' respective primaries in convincing fashion with Davis garnering nearly 80 percent of the Democratic vote and Abbott prevailing with over 90 percent of Republicans backing him.

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