Kay Bailey Hutchinson
The Senate passed Porkulus III by a vote of 70-28 with 13 Republicans demonstrating their party’s new found fiscal conservatism by crossing over to vote with every Democrat present for the bill. Like the first Porkulus signed by George W. Bush in 2008 and the Porkulus II passed last year, Porkulus III forks over billions of borrowed dollars to fund various special interest projects and tax gimmicks in the name of “creating jobs”.
The gimmicks funded in this lastest round of Porkulus include a tax holiday for the remainder of the year on Social Security payroll taxes, but only if the company hires someone out of work for more than 60 days. In addition, Porkulus commits to billions in in more mass transit spending and more highway projects (ie. more pork barrel spending).
The Senate’s version of Porkulus must be sent over to the House where it must be reconciled with the House’s much more expansive $154 billion Porkulus bill. However, the Senate plans to pass more items in the House’s bill one at a time so that Senate Majority Harry Reid and other Democrat leaders can find out how much the prices of the votes of “fiscally conservative” Republicans are.
Included are proposed Senate bills giving away corporate welfare to ethanol producers, which is expected to be supported by farm state Republicans. In addition, there is another planned Senate bill to keep Americans out of work longer by extending unemployment benefits and COBRA.
The RINOs who supported Porkulus III today are:
On Friday, Ted Cruz, a conservative running for United States Senate in Texas, released the results of an internal poll showing that he has a 9-point lead over David Dewhurst just a few weeks out from the July 31st runoff:
Ted Cruz led Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst by 9 points in a recent internal poll conducted for the former Texas solicitor general’s campaign, a Cruz source has confirmed.
From the earliest days of the race to replace retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R), Dewhurst has been the frontrunner. But in this survey, 49 percent of respondents said they would vote for Cruz. Forty percent supported Dewhurst, and 11 percent were undecided.
The poll surveyed 750 likely Republican runoff voters June 24-26 with a 3.6-point margin of error. Cruz had 96 percent name identification among those voters and Dewhurst had 98 percent name identification.
Sixty percent of those surveyed viewed Cruz favorably, with 21 percent saying they had an unfavorable opinion of him. Dewhurst had an almost identical favorability rating, 59 percent, while 30 percent viewed him unfavorably.
Unsurprisingly, Dewhurst’s campaign says that there internal polling shows him with a “comfortable advantage” over Cruz. Dewhurst, who took 47% of the vote in the May primary, has also received some support from Republicans in the Texas Senate, which he, as the state’s Lt. Governor, oversees. The Republican Senators are taking issue with attacks by Cruz on Dewhurst’s record.
Polls in Texas have recently showed that Ted Cruz, who is being supported by conservative and Tea Party groups, is closing in on David Dewhurst, the establishment pick in the race to fill the seat being left open by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX). But a new poll from the University of Texas shows that Dewhurst’s lead over Cruz is now in single-digits and headed to a runoff:
If the 2012 Texas Republican primary election for the U.S. Senate were held today, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst would fall short of the 50 percent needed to avoid a runoff election, according to a University of Texas at Austin/Texas Tribune poll.
When asked whom they would support if the 2012 Texas Republican primary election for U.S. Senator were held today, 40 percent of GOP primary voters named Dewhurst, followed by Cruz at 28 percent, and former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert at 15 percent. The leading candidate would need at least 50 percent of the vote to avoid a runoff election on July 31.
Dewhurst’s lead was even narrower among likely voters, leading Cruz 40 to 31 percent, with Leppert polling at 17 percent. Likely voters are defined by the survey as those who indicate an interest in politics and report voting in most elections (274 respondents in the survey sample said they intended to vote in the GOP primary and were also identified as likely voters).
Daron Shaw, professor of Government at The University of Texas at Austin and co-director of the poll, said Cruz has been able to position himself to the right of the lieutenant governor for a May 29 Republican primary where that’s a big advantage — and he’s done that in a year in which insurgent candidates have been scoring big wins against establishment Republicans.
Among the candidates that are getting support from conservatives and grassroots groups, Ted Cruz, who is running for U.S. Senate in Texas, has received a lot of support. Unfortunately, Cruz has a mountain to climb as polls currently David Dewhurst with a sizable lead.
But Cruz is hoping to rally support from conservatives in Texas, and is hitting Dewhurst on taxes and his inability to stand up to the TSA. And with help from prominent conservatives, Cruz may be able to do just that. During an interview on the The Michael Berry Show, Jim DeMint, the tea party-minded Senator from South Carolina who runs the Senate Conservatives PAC, noted his support for Cruz.
Robert Paul, son of Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) and brother of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), is apparently considering a bid for the United States Senate in Texas:
Robert Paul, a doctor who lives in Fort Worth, is saying maybe, telling a newspaper that he has “thought about running” for the seat representing Texas in the Senate that is being vacated by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, who is not running for reelection.
One of Rep. Ron Paul’s (R-Texas) five children, Robert would become the second Paul offspring to run for Congress, joining brother Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who was elected last year.
In an interview with the Star-Telegram published Thursday, Robert Paul acknowledged that he is considering a bid but hasn’t decided whether to run. “I am very happy as a physician,” he said.
But, he said, concerns about federal spending could draw him into the race. “[I] have a lot of concern about the debt,” he said. Internet speculation that the younger Texas Paul might run for Senate began spreading soon after Hutchison announced that she would not seek another term. He is set to speak at the University of North Texas next Thursday.
Another Paul in the Senate isn’t a bad idea. But he’ll need to decide what he is going to do soon since Ted Cruz, one of the candidates that raised $1 million, seems to be getting a lot of attention in his bid.
Despite a looming bid by former Gov. Gary Johnson (R-NM), Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) further advanced speculation that he is considering another bid for president by accepting an invitation to speak to a prominent activist in Iowa:
Rep. Ron Paul, the libertarian-leaning Republican from Texas, will speak in Iowa next month at a presidential lecture series for the Family Leader, a social conservative activist group. It’s another signal Mr. Paul is pondering his third run at the White House.
The outspoken lawmaker, who has said he wants to dismantle the Federal Reserve, ran as a Libertarian in 1988 and as a Republican in 2008.
Other likely GOP candidates, including Newt Gingrich and Tim Pawlenty, will be speaking at the lecture series throughout the month.
Will Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) run for United States Senate in 2012? The thought has crossed his mind, according to a report from The Hill:
Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) says a new poll that shows him a a top choice among Texas Republicans to run for Senate has him thinking about the race.
“It’s certainly crossed my mind,” Paul told The Ballot Box of a potential run for Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison’s (R-Texas) Senate seat next year.
New numbers out Wednesday from Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling found Paul was second only to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R) among Texas Republicans asked who they want to see run for the seat in 2012.
The poll found Dewhurst to be the top choice of Republicans, garnering 23 percent support. But Paul was right behind him as the pick of 20 percent of GOP voters.
The two-time presidential candidate stressed that his potential interest in a Senate seat wasn’t anything new, but admitted the poll numbers had peaked his interest.
Ron Paul finished a distant 2nd to Phil Gramm in 1984. Gramm would go on to serve in the United States Senate from 1985 to 2002.
But don’t get too excited. The National Journal believes that Paul is likely to sit out the race, and will likely run for president over the Senate:
A Senate run “only crosses my mind because people ask me about it,” said Paul, whose son and fellow Republican, Rand Paul, was sworn in as Kentucky’s junor senator earlier this month. “I don’t think it’s a real possibility.”
On Friday, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) announced that she will not run for re-election in 2012, immediately setting off speculation as to which Republicans would make a run for the seat held by Hutchison since 1993:
“This news will cause a lot of political dominoes to fall in Texas,” said Mark McKinnon, a former George W. Bush political adviser and a longtime observer of Texas politics. “A lot of pols have been waiting a long time to move up.”
The list is longer on the Republican side, led by popular Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. Personally wealthy from a career in the energy industry, Dewhurst could self-fund what would be a costly statewide run, a huge advantage in a vast state.
He was deferential on Thursday, saying “today is Kay Bailey Hutchison’s day.” Still, he was not above stoking speculation.
“I fully intend to explore running for the United States Senate, and should I run, I will run with the intention of winning and continuing to serve the people of Texas,” he said.
Other potential candidates also gingerly signaled their intention to explore the race. Railroad Commissioner Elizabeth Ames Jones offered warm praise for Hutchison before saying that, she, too, would consider the race. Other Republicans who are expected to run or consider a run are Jones’ colleague on the Railroad Commission Michael Williams, Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert, and former Secretary of State Roger Williams.
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), who was involved in several high profile primaries leading up to the 2010 mid-term elections, also dropped some names of prospective candidates:
Voters in Texas will head to the Republican and Democratic Party primary voters will head to the polls tomorrow to determine who will be their nominees for office in November. Candidates on the ballot include Debra Medina, who is running for governor against incumbent Rick Perry and Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson, and Rep. Ron Paul, who is facing three primary challengers.
Medina, who was endorsed by Dr. Paul, had been rising until some comments on Glenn Beck’s radio show that sparked controversy. Since that time her poll numbers have dropped off, likely not enough to let Perry skate away without a runoff against Hutchinson.
While I haven’t been able to see any internal numbers, I hear Paul’s campaign isn’t too worried about the three challengers (John Gay, Tim Graney and Gerald Wall) he faces on Tuesday. That doesn’t mean that they don’t notice them, after all he has participated in debates and they seem to respect the anti-incumbent feeling in the political atmosphere.
None of the challengers have raised enough money to mount a significant campaign, though I would like to see Paul’s financial disclosure come the end of the first quarter.
I’d be shocked if Ron Paul received anything less than 60 percent of the vote tomorrow. We’ll let you know the results as soon as they are available.
A new poll out of Texas by Public Policy Polling shows Texas gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina is catching up to her opponents in the Republican primary, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson and Gov. Rick Perry:
Could the Republican primary for Governor in Texas end up in a runoff between Rick Perry…and Debra Medina? Medina is coming on strong and polls now at 24%, just four points behind Kay Bailey Hutchison’s 28%. Perry continues to hold a double digit advantage at 39%.
Medina is clearly riding the wave of discontent with the Republican establishment. Among primary voters who disapprove of the job the GOP in Congress is doing she actually leads with 37% to 32% for Perry and 22% for Hutchison. The problem for Medina is those folks only account for a third of the electorate and among the majority who are happy with the Republicans in Washington she’s in a distant third at 17% to 48% for Perry and 27% for Hutchison. There may not end up being enough discontented Republican voters for her to move into the top two but she is nevertheless exceeding expectations.
Many liberty activists in Texas are backing Medina. I know they’re thrilled by this. We have inquired about having on the United Liberty Podcast, but have yet to hear anything back.