June 27, 2018

TX Progressives look at the Texas Dem Convention, more

Here is the second part of this week's annual roundup from the Texas Progressive Alliance. The TPA — and many of its readers — attended the Texas Democratic Party convention last weekend, and the news, blog posts, and Tweets in this week's roundup reflect the variety of takes and takeaways from Fort Worth.

Lily Seglin, Houston Chronicle: Dems have momentum but no coherent narrative to sell.

Christopher Collins, Texas Observer: Texas Democrats want to turn out rural voters, but what’s their plan? (It's true that statewide candidates, other than Beto running for a federal office, are pretty lame.)

Gromer Jeffers, Dallas News: After passionate convention, Democrats look to sway average Texas voters (which, per Brains, means the conservative but not wingnut suburban soccer moms Wendy Davis chased).

Beto O'Rourke, the candidate upon whose shoulders the heaviest hopes lie for breaking the party's 24-year old losing streak, repeated his message about appealing to Republicans by phrasing it as "showing up".  Erica Greider is saying there's a chance this can work.

Texas' Latin@ voters have been an alleged
"sleeping giant" for 50 years now.
Texas Democrats re-elected Gilberto Hinojosa as party chair despite the fact that the long-awaited Latin@ surge at the polls has become something of a 'Waiting for Godot' affair.

(Your blogger five years ago wrote about the unwarranted assumptions on which a Latin@ surge for Democrats was based and predicted Texas Dems would be shut out of statewide office until 2020 or later.)

Grits for Breakfast has the details on the criminal justice reforms undertaken in the Texas Democratic Party platform.

Meanwhile, Texas Dems’ failure to call for the legalization of cannabis, not just the medicinal forms, is a squandered electoral opportunity for the Donkeys. After all, the GOP, earlier this month, called for decriminalization.

Dr. David Brockman, covering the convention for the Texas Observer, attended the Secular Caucus and has some ... observations.

Ted from jobsanger had to argue with party officials for his media credential in order to blog the conclave.

John Coby at Bay Area Houston, blogging busily, complained about "the far left" and Our Revolution in his convention wrap.

Your blog editor followed Brains' Twitter feed enough to be unsurprised about the old guard getting re-elected to all top offices, and about the party taking a pass on marijuana legalization.

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And, TPA bloggers and others take on other issues

Socratic Gadfly talks about why, if the unemployment rate is so low, there aren't more jobs out there.

Stephen Young at the Dallas Observer wonders what comes next after the Texas Supreme Court nullified Laredo's plastic bag ban, and thus several similar laws passed by other Texas cities.

The public hearings in association with the plans to reimagine Alamo Plaza were loud and unruly, as reported (in somewhat irritable tone) by the publisher of the Rivard Report.

Red meat allergies are on the rise due to bites from Lone Star ticks, and their range is expanding in the US, reports NPR. 

Texas Vox's Citizen Stephanie went to Washington to testify against the EPA's roll-back of the Chemical Disaster Rule.

Downwinders at Risk reports on the state's first permanent smog monitor overseen by civilians, up and running in Wise County.

Jim Schutze talks about the strange marriage of Dem-leaning teacher union types and tea partiers that has fueled the rise in charter schools.

Finally, the GOP Texas Lege largely won the gerrymander battle at the Supreme Court.

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