Fred Henneke, Attorney & Counselor-At-Law

TEXAS PUNDITRY; 01/22/2019

I believe most of you know I live in Texas. Right after the mid-term election in November, 2018, I ventured some thoughts on the national scene. Here are some observations about my home state

For the last 40 years or so, Texas has been the bulwark of Republican presidential elections. You could put Texas in the GOP column from the very git-go.. Today, It has not turned true blue, or even a dark shade of purple Yet, but the trend is alarming. Some statistics from the 2018 elections:

* Senator Ted Cruz defeated Beto O’Rourke, the darling of the Democrats, by only 2.3% out of 8.3 million votes cast. In 2010, he won by high double digits.

*  In my Congressional district (the 21st), the Republican candidate won by about the same margin. This seat has been held by a Republican since 1978.

* In Tarrant County (Fort Worth), heretofore a staunch Republican/Tea Party county, the Democrats defeated an incumbent state representative, state senator, and the  congressman who was the Chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee. The vote went from plus 9% Republican in 2016 to -0.6% in 2018.

*Every major metropolitan area saw the Democrat vote exceed the Republican vote, as happened in 2016. However, suburban counties outside Austin, Houston and Dallas/Ft. Worth also moved toward the Democrats.

* Statewide, the Republicans lost 12 seats in the state house of representatives and 2 in the senate. The Republicans still control both chambers but only by one seat in the senate, which could have a major impact on legislation this session.

* Governor Abbott won re-election by about 11.9 percent against a very weak, poorly funded opponent. In 2014, he won by  20% against a popular, well-funded opponent. The Lieutenant Governor, Dan Patrick, won by only 4.9 percent, way below his margin of victory in 2014.

* The population of Texas continues to surge. It is estimated that 1400 people move to Texas every day. Do they go to the metropolitan area or the rural areas? San Antonio has 66 people move there every day. Where are the Democrats the strongest? Where the population increase is the greatest.

* Every Republican Court of Appeals judge running against a Democrat lost. Every Republican judge in Bexar County (San Antonio) with a Democrat opponent lost.

* From 2000 till 2017, the percentage of white, non-Hispanic Texans fell from 52.4% to 42.0%.  Hispanics voted for O’Rourke over Cruz 64-35. In Dallas County, Hispanic turnout increased 86%.

I could pile statistics on statistics but the picture is clear. The Democrats dream has come true; Texas IS a battleground state. By 2024 at the latest, if this trend continues the Democrats will elect someone in a state-wide election for the first time since 1994.

Is the situation hopeless for the GOP. Absolutely not. But, the Republicans must hitch up the wagons and go to work at the grassroots level. No longer can we count on the preponderance of non-Hispanic whites to carry the day. We must reach into ALL segments of Texas and bring to them a winning message. NOW.

Which also means we must carry a winning message. The Texas GOP must find a way to divorce itself from the stigma of racism and misogynism that hangs over the Trump presidency. We need to brag about the jobs and quality of life and opportunities that Republican leadership and governance have produced over the last decades. The Republican issues must be those issues that the vast majority of Texans are passionate about. Not constitutional carry or transgender bathrooms but low taxes and jobs and schools and public safety and equal opportunity. We must get back to those principles that have marked Republicanism for generations. The infatuation with the far-right has failed. Let’s return to the “Big Tent” of Ronald Reagan and lead Texas forward for future Texans.

STAY TUNED!

 

 

 

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INSTANT ANALYSIS: 01/08/2019

YAWN!! Reminds me of two bull mooses separated by an wall (get it) bugling and challenging each other with full knowledge that nothing was actually going to happen. President Trump attempted to make this a humanitarian, law and order crisis by citing horrible incidents of violence by persons here illegally, as if to say that… Continue Reading

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SHUTDOWNS AND OTHER LUNACIES; 12/30/2018

Today about 1/3rd of the United States government is “shutdown”, including the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of State and the Department of Justice. This means that those persons working in the shutdown departments that are “essential” are still working but not getting paid until after the shutdown, and those persons deemed “non-essential” and furloughed… Continue Reading

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MUELLER; 12/10/2018

After a pause for the mid-term elections, Special Counsel Robert Mueller has lit the afterburners. In the past two weeks, we have seen additional charges brought against Michael Cohen along with a harsh sentencing memo, a lenient sentencing memo for Michael Flynn, and a filing against Paul Manafort to rescind their agreement regarding the charges… Continue Reading

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41; 12/04/2018

George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st President of the United States, died last Friday. He was, and probably always will be, the last patrician President. Born to wealth and status in Connecticut, he finished high school after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and joined the Navy at age 18. At 19 he was a navy… Continue Reading

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  1. I didn’t always agree with his politics…but, always admired him. I hope that we will have some one like him in politics..doubt it, but hope so

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NATIONAL PUNDITRY; 11/19/2018

I might have redeemed myself as a pundit. I predicted a net gain of 30 – 35 Democrat seats in the House of Representatives and 2 Republican gains in the Senate. Tonight the score is Democrats +37 with three still too close to call and Republicans +3 with Mississippi in a run-off voting next week.… Continue Reading

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ELECTION CONCLUSIONS: 11/08/2018

Some conclusions I draw from the election results: House of Representatives. The last tally I heard had the Democrats flipping 34 seats with a handful too close to call. That gives them the majority in the House and allows them to organize, control the committees and set the agenda. Not exactly a ‘blue wave” but… Continue Reading

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MUSINGS ON ELECTION EVE; 11/05/2018

As we await the election results, here are some pertinent thoughts:  Everyone, including the President, appears to agree that the election tomorrow is nothing less than a referendum on President Trump at the mid-point of his Administration. Indeed, the President is actively encouraging people to see the election as a referendum on his performance. After… Continue Reading

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MIDTERMS; 10/22/2018

Early voting started today here in Texas and will continue through November 2. WiIl YOU be a gladiator or just a spectator? Can you spare an hour of your time to be a CITIZEN? Do you care about the future of our Nation, your children, your grandchilldren and, just as important, YOURSELF? Elections have consequences… Continue Reading

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“WHAT DO WE DO NOW”*; 10’12’2018

Deep breath. Deep breath. After being glued to our seats for the Kavanaugh hearings (political theater at its worst), we .now turn our undivided attention to the mid-term election ending on November 6. In some states they are already voting; here in Texas, early voting begins Monday, October 22nd. What’s at stake – just control… Continue Reading

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