A Tarrant County judge who is mild-mannered has spoken out about the many problems that both Republicans and Texas have faced.
He's even naming names: Lieutenant Governor. Dan Patrick, Tim Dunn, and Dan and Farris Wiks.
We have become more like Washington every year since 2006, when Dan Patrick was elected [as state senator] in Texas and Empower Texans was established. He spoke out to civic leaders the other night, revealing two forces that have made life difficult for Republicans and have recently even pressed Gov. Greg Abbott must obey the law.
They make everyone look bad. They target local officials. From Empower Texans' perspective, he used the old PAC title loosely for Dunn and Wilks brothers. These are all West Texas oil-money political donor who spend millions of dollars to elect candidates. They feel that if they have influence over half of the Capitol members, they can control what happens in Texas.
Whitley, a judge and county commissioner for 24 years, is not the first to make this sound off.
2018: Hurst accountant, John Hurst, set off fireworks at the normally snoreworthy State of the County speech. He claimed that Dunn was trying buy the Legislature by backing Texas House challengers.
He chose Patrick, a former radio talk show host, to be his target. Patrick holds the most powerful state government position and is the closest state official to President Donald Trump.
Whitley stated in a later interview that Patrick is pushing Abbott further to the right.
Whitley was an example of this. Whitley and Texas Republican officials supported labor unions in their fight against corporations.
Fort Worth and Dallas Chambers of Commerce, Texas Realtors and manufacturers, contractors, and even Texans for Lawsuit Reform reacted sharply to defend employers.
Whitley stated, "When would you think that the Republican Party would tell a business what it can do?"
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The governor's lieutenant governor has the final say on what goes to him. It's transgender bills, it's bathroom bills, and it's the election [recount]. Patrick continues to push for a lot of things.
The two officials have been locked in a contest to determine who is the most conservative heading into the 2022 election.
Whitley stated that the governor is running again to be elected president.
He must be viewed as the most conservative person within the state and more conservative than [Ron DeSantis, Florida governor].
But in Texas, Patrick is the most powerful official. They are responsible for state policy, state law, and the state budget.
The power of Abbott lies in his appointments and, more recently, in the 1975 law that allows him to issue orders and respond to the dangers of natural disasters.
If Patrick is pushing the party further to the right, then Dunn and the Wilks Brothers are helping to push it forward.
Dunn, the co-founder of the Midland religious private school, was described by a Texas Monthly headline in 2018 as "pushing the Republican Party into God's arms."
Since a few 2019 scandals in which staffers made fun of Abbott's wheelchair, the PAC has been relatively low-profile. Last year, Dunn donated $1.5 million to Pilot Pilot salon proprietor Shelley Luthers' losing Texas Senate campaign.
Farris Wilks, a church elder, and his brother Dan have emerged in recent years as prominent national Republican donors funding websites and supporting the partys Christian-libertarian faction. Jon Francis, Farris' son-in law, spent $1.5million in one losing 2020 Texas House election.
Whitley stated that these people are prepared to invest millions, millions, and even millions of dollars in campaigns.
They bring their money with them and attempt to control what happens in the state. They are able to take control of our elected officials more and more.
Whitley will not be running in 2022.
This means that he can continue to tell the truth about Texas.