But don’t tell that to DC’s chattering class who would have you believe there isn’t any difference between Dewhurst and Ted Cruz. They claim this campaign is just about which kind of “conservative” we will get in Washington — a “veteran conservative legislator” (read: guy who make nice with leadership), or a new member of the “doesn’t-play-well-with-others” caucus.
It is “nonsense,” according to George Will for example, that anyone claim Dewhurst to be moderate.
This kind of pabulum is what is nonsense – and a classic Washington two-step around Will’s own (proper) gushing over Cruz a few months ago in which he praised Cruz for being “as good as it gets” and being (hopefully) a part of a cadre of new Senators who “take their bearings from constitutional law” before the New Deal. Sounds like someone has been taken behind the woodshed by Mitch McConnell or some other DC establishment hack and told to “get in line.”
David Dewhurst’s conservative bona-fides are based entirely on Rick Perry’s record. It is so absurd that Dewhurst cannot even vote without taking Rick Perry to the polls with him. This is not difficult. Liberal newspapers endorse him precisely because of his supposed moderation. And his other endorsements are a who’s who of Austin insiders over whom Dewhurst has immeasurable control currently and in the future should he lose. Meanwhile, Ted is endorsed by a veritable who’s who of conservative rock stars – from national movement conservatives like Sarah Palin and Jim DeMint to long time Texas activists like Kelly Shackleford and Cathie Adams.
Let’s take a look at what people who actually follow this stuff are saying or doing:
From the endorsement of the Houston Chronicle:
By our lights, Dewhurst’s service, particularly his leadership of the Texas Senate, has been a model of respectful efficiency. His is a record of fairness and willingness to reach across party lines to do what is best for Texas.
Along with House Speaker Joe Straus, Dewhurst has been a welcome stabilizing influence in an often stormy and polarized legislative process. Isn’t that what’s called for in a divided Washington? We think it is.
Dewhurst has shown in his decade as lieutenant governor that he can build coalitions and work in partnership with others… Cruz came away looking like a guy who knows what he believes, while Dewhurst looked painfully contorted. This leads me back to what I’ve written about in previous posts, and that is I wish center-right Republicans like Dewhurst would just defend their ground, and not try to out-conservative hard-righters like Cruz.
From the Dallas Morning News Editorial
Dewhurst has been bipartisan at times, including appointing Democrats to head committees… and… he has been impressive in other ways, mastering the details of complex issues, for example, and building coalitions to get things done
The figure reveals a Dewhurst-run Senate where the senators who enjoyed the most success were in the moderate and center wings of the Republican Party.
I also conclude that Dewhurst frequently used his powers of agenda control to help pass legislation opposed by the most conservative members of the Republican delegation. In addition, the best estimate of Dewhurst’s location along the liberal-conservative continuum which dominates voting in the Texas Senate suggests he is significantly less conservative than approximately one-third of the Republican delegation
Finally – simply take a look at the list of endorsements. It is truly laughable the distinction between the two. Dewhurst is supported by the Austin power circle. Ted is supported by anyone with a clue how badly we need a conservative U.S. Senator from Texas in Washington to protect freedom.