Tag Archives: Dan Patrick cons

Vote For $10.10: Wendy Davis Pledges To Raise Texas Minimum Wage

Texas is often heralded for being the most prolific job creator in the United States.  One look at the basic employment rolls reveals that in itself, that is a true statement.

What is often missed in that purely quantitative assessment of the roaring Texas job factory?  Too many Texans are forced to work in low-wage jobs that have no benefits, and are living paycheck to paycheck with little ability to meet their most basic needs, much less plan for their future.  This is the painful reality that occurs in a state that has encouraged corporations to put profits over people for far too long.  As revealed in a recent study by The Economic Policy Institute (via Fortune Magazine), it turns out that Texas needs an increase of the minimum wage more than any other state…

Which state needs a minimum wage increase the most?

The Economic Policy Institute tried to answer this question by examining how many state residents would be directly affected by a minimum wage hike to $10.10 and what sort of state stimulus such a raise would produce.

After crunching the numbers, there was a clear winner: Texas, where the current minimum wage is the federally mandated $7.25 an hour.

Out of an estimated total workforce of nearly 11 million in Texas, a $10.10 minimum wage would directly affect 1.95 million people – in other words, that many Texans would get a raise because a $10.10 wage would surpass what they currently make. (Another 920,000 Texans would be indirectly affected since they make just above $10.10 and a minimum wage hike would likely adjust pay scales overall.)

With so many Texans struggling to make ends meet, one would think that calls to raise the state’s minimum wage would be growing louder. In recent months, there have been several prominent protests from national sources, but not as much organizing done exclusively at the state level.

The grand irony here?  Raising Texas’ minimum wage wouldn’t just benefit low-wage workers, but would likely be a huge boon to business across the state as well.  Here’s more on that, again from Fortune Magazine…

What outpaces other states even more is the economic benefit that Texas would receive from a $10.10 minimum wage. The EPI estimates that the state would see a gross domestic product impact of $3.1 billion, that’s nearly $2 billion more than the potential stimulus in Florida — again the runner-up.

It’s not just the total number of workers in Texas – the second most populous state in the U.S. – that puts the state in this position. It’s also the state’s incredibly large low-wage workforce. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 400,000 workers in Texas whose hourly wage is at or below the federal standard of $7.25 – more than double that of any other state. While that’s a lot in absolute terms, it also represents a large portion of the state’s overall workforce: 6.4% — the fifth highest percentage in the country, behind Tennessee, Idaho, Arkansas and Alabama.

Many business leaders have figured out that raising wages is good for them.  Take for example Buc-ee’s… the gas station and knick-knack chain that is quickly becoming a Lone Star institution.  Key to their undeniable success?  The fact all workers are paid wages starting at $11.50 per hour.   Contrary to all the horror stories people tell about stores collapsing if they’re forced to pay employees more, and prices of goods surging out of control, Buc-ee’s is doing just fine.

Right now, people in every corner of the Lone Star State are making critical decisions in the voting booth about education, health care, and future government priorities.  Though the actual minimum wage may not be up for a vote in 2014, you can be sure that this issue is on the ballot.  If you support raising the minimum wage for the state of Texas, then you should also support Wendy Davis… the only candidate that has pledged to do just that.  As a former minimum wage worker and single mom, she knows that even if politicians and news media aren’t always talking about it, establishing a living wage for Texas will have a drastic effects on millions of people’s lives.

Here’s what Davis said last month, via the Victoria Advocate

Raising the minimum wage suddenly became a hot issue in the Texas governor’s race just after Labor Day, with Democrat Wendy Davis endorsing it, and Republican Greg Abbott opposing it.

The national campaign by fast-food workers calling for raising the minimum wage helped spark the discussion.

“I’ll fight to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10 because this is a family issue,” Davis declared Thursday at a rally at the University of Texas-San Antonio, during her multicity tour of universities.

“Half of the 2.8 million people in Texas who would benefit from an increase in the minimum wage are supporting families,” Davis said.

“$7.25 an hour is $15,000 a year, and I know from experience that is not enough to support a family,” Davis said.

Leticia Van de Putte, the Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor, also supports raising the state’s minimum wage.  As the state’s highest elected officials, Davis and Van de Putte would truly have the ability to bring this need to light and commit the legislature to a wage increase.

On the other hand, Davis’ opponent Greg Abbott remains a vigorous defender low-wages for the Lone Star state.

A lot of people think that elections don’t matter, or that their vote isn’t going to make a difference in an election.  But in 2014 for the state of Texas, that couldn’t be further from the truth.  If Texans show up to the polls during Early Voting and on Election Day, they will have Wendy Davis as Governor.  And that decision could result in a living wage for literally millions of people.  This time, it’s just too important to sit out.

‘Can’t survive on $7.25?’  Then vote for Wendy Davis and Leticia Van de Putte.  Vote for $10.10.  

 

Dan Patrick’s Attack Ad… Against Rick Perry??

Like he did in the recent Lieutenant Gubernatorial debate against Democratic candidate Leticia Van de Putte, Republican Dan Patrick has decided to double down on anti-immigrant rhetoric during this year’s election cycle. A new ad by Patrick correctly says that Senator Van de Putte “wrote the LAW giving in-state tuition to”… well you heard  what they said, but Texas Leftist happens to know that PEOPLE are not illegal, even if their actions sometimes are.  The point here?  In order for that in-state tuition provision to become law, it had to be signed by a Republican Governor because that’s who was in office when the law was passed.  As it turns out, Governor Rick Perry not only signed the law, which has gone on to help thousands of individuals obtain their education, but he supports that law to this day.

As a result, Dan Patrick is so far to the Right, he is now running against Rick Perry. And you can be sure that Patrick is also running far to the Right of what most Texas voters believe as well.  Here’s more on the Republicans he’s left behind from the National Journal

While Republican Govs. George W. Bush and Rick Perry prioritized Hispanic outreach and consistently rejected polarizing immigration policies, Patrick—and like-minded new state GOP leaders like Sen. Ted Cruz—are steering Texas Republicans sharply rightward on these issues. Patrick ousted incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in a GOP primary this year, mostly behind promises to toughen enforcement at the Mexican border and to repeal the policy of providing in-state public college tuition to young people brought to the U.S. illegally—a plan that the outgoing Gov. Perry signed and still defends.

[…]

Texas Republicans today strike very different notes. Patrick, a state senator and talk-radio host, is the most inflammatory. He has described illegal immigration as an “invasion” and warned that undocumented immigrants “are bringing Third World diseases with them.”

[…]

A procession of prominent Texas Republican Hispanics like state Rep. Jason Villalba has publicly condemned Patrick’s approach. Likewise, Bush’s nephew, Jeb’s son George P. Bush, who is the Republican nominee for land commissioner in Texas, has joined Perry in saying he still supports in-state tuition for undocumented students. Greg Abbott, the GOP’s gubernatorial nominee, is spending heavily to court Hispanics and has also kept his distance from Patrick’s most volatile rhetoric.

Greg Abbott may sound more sympathetic than the Lt. Gov. candidate, but you can be sure that he wouldn’t hesitate to sign some of these same vile ideas into law.  Both candidates at the top of the Texas Republican ticket are proving this year that any common sense once held by their party is diminishing quickly.

In a way, voters should be thankful that Patrick has revealed his true viewpoint, as it gives everyone a clear choice for the Lieutenant Governor’s race. The Republican… excuse me… TEApublican candidate is so far away from his party that he couldn’t care less how many real Texas families would be hurt by his racist, anti-immigrant policies. With Van de Putte as Lieutenant Governor, Texans know that a repeal of in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants isn’t even a remote possibility.

But this year’s election is about more than just Dan Patrick.  A vote for Leticia Van de Putte also presents a unique opportunity to reject the large-scale cowardice that pervades the Democratic Party on immigration issues. We’ve seen it with President Obama’s litany of failed promises to end deportations, and we’ve definitely seen it through Wendy Davis’ misguided attempts to seek a middle ground on border security issues. A Van de Putte win sends a clear signal to Washington and Austin that communities at the center of the immigration fight DO vote, will continue to vote, demand common-sense solutions and refuse to be ignored anymore.

There’s no way to properly convey the anger and hurt that affected families have to endure because of the nation’s immigration politics. But in this year’s election, let’s hope those same citizens don’t pass up the chance to have one of their strongest advocates yet enter the national conversation.

Leticia said it best in her recent ad… “porque nuestra comunidad nunca se rinde!”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5CbyT1qsg0

 

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Texas Lt. Gubernatorial Debate: Review

Well Dan Patrick said it best…

In the race for Lieutenant Governor, there has never been such a clear difference between two candidates.

Which is indeed a true statement… one of a precious few the Houston-area Senator and Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor told during his debate with San Antonio Democrat Leticia Van de Putte, who is vying for the same office also with her party’s nomination.  Patrick was even given a Pants on Fire rating for one of his responses, as according to the Politifact scoring of the contest.  This was a running theme for the evening with Patrick, who insisted issue after issue that his plans were sound, even when there was a mountain of evidence to the contrary.

Take the tax plan that Dan Patrick is proposing, where he wants to lower property taxes for all Texas home and business owners, yet still manage to fund all of the government’s responsibilities.  How does he propose doing this?  By raising sales taxes.  Leticia Van de Putte was quick to rebut this plan, correcting Patrick that property taxes aren’t even controlled by the state, but by local governments and school districts.  Patrick is correct that the state can set lower caps on property tax, but that decreases funds for all of these essential services.

The subject of Education brought the most fiery point of the evening.  Van de Putte stated that when faced with budget short falls in 2011, the state Legislature had a choice to cut, or to invest.  Here’s what Van de Putte said to her opponent…

You need a Math lesson. The fact is that 11,000 teachers lost their jobs.  8,000 class waivers.  A judge has said that our system is inefficient, inequitable and not working.

Patrick’s response was not deny the cuts, but simply double down and try to justify them

Those 11,000 teachers [that’s] a lot of jobs. But by the way we have 332,000 teachers. And those 11,000 teachers were a lot who just retired.  And those 11,000 slots were for the replaced by, like the Math Department head, or various people.  So your children weren’t shorted.

From listening to this, it’s that Senator Patrick needs more than just a Math lesson.  He apparently doesn’t understand the concept of forced retirement, where a teacher is let go long before their choosing.  Nor does he understand that when schools lost teachers, each of those “various people” had to take on extra classes and students to meet the desperate of growing schools that were making substantial cuts.  Patrick can say certainly claim that the school children of Texas “weren’t shorted” from disastrous decisions waged by the GOP, but if that were the case, then why are 600 school districts suing the state due to under-funding? If the “children weren’t shorted” then why decide to restore some of the funding cuts during the 2013 legislative session, and why did your campaign team boast that you “led the charge” to do so??  Say whatever you want Dan… it’s still not true.

One other very clear distinction was on the issue of marriage equality.  Dan Patrick confirmed that under no circumstances would he support a movement for marriage equality in the state of Texas.  Van de Putte had a different view…

I think people’s attitudes are changing.  What we know is that our Gay and Lesbian brothers and sisters are in our work force, and in our families.  They deserve full equality.  As Lieutenant Governor, I would make sure that this discussion on equality would continue.  That’s why I sponsored a bill last Legislative session to make sure our Gay and Lesbian brothers and sisters are not discriminated against [in the workplace].

An historic position for a major party, statewide candidate in Texas, and yet another indicator of just how clear of a choice voters have this fall.  In performance, Leticia Van de Putte struck a good balance between consistency, and sincerity.  She forcefully rebutted Patrick when needed, but was also able to stay on track.  Patrick’s style was not bad by any measure, but at times, he lost control, and even became angry when answering Van de Putte.  I guess that’s what happens when you have to work so hard to distort the truth.

In any case, Leticia Van de Putte was the clear winner of this debate. The entire event is linked below, so watch, share with friends and decide for yourself…

 

Leticia Van de Putte Launches TV Campaign

State Senator Leticia Van de Putte continues with another huge step in her historic campaign to be Texas’ first Female, Hispanic Lieutenant Governor. Today the Democratic candidate released her first major statewide TV ads.  Here’s more from the Van de Putte campaign via press release…

San Antonio, TX — This weekend, Leticia Van de Putte is releasing her first two television ads, one in English and a separate ad in Spanish. The 30-second spots are a significant buy in multiple major media markets, as well as markets with a dominant Latino population.

In “Twice,” Leticia Van de Putte directly calls out Dan Patrick, who voted twice against our kids. Patrick’s cuts to our neighborhood schools in 2011 resulted in the loss of 11,000 teacher jobs. In 2013, Leticia worked across the aisle with many Republicans to put Texas first and support our students. Despite bipartisan support for our neighborhood schools, Dan Patrick voted against our kids — again.

http://youtu.be/nfJSeVnBTyU

In “Respeto,” Leticia Van de Putte shares about the respect that every Texan deserves. Leticia introduces her immigrant grandmothers; as well as the service of her mother, a teacher, and that of her father, a veteran. Texans never give up, and Leticia — a mother of six, grandmother of six, pharmacist and a State Senator — commits to continue the fight to protect the future of our kids.

http://youtu.be/x5CbyT1qsg0

The aspirational nature of “Respeto”  speaks deeply to a community whose voice has long been lacking in Texas statewide politics.  “Twice” does a great job of straddling the lines of presenting negative information on the opponent, while managing to be a net positive ad. Touting her strong bipartisan record and unique family story, these ads seem to have all the right ingredients for success.

With six weeks to go before the first votes are cast, it’s impossible to predict just what kind of impact will be had from these spots.  But by getting out ahead of her opponent Dan Patrick with strong ads, Leticia has assured that the first “big move” is hers.