The San Antonio Express-News reports that the Texas Republican Convention has officially closed, and endorsed a new platform that is even scarier than the one before it. While the previous stone-age planks in the platform, such as the repudiation of critical thinking or urging the rescinding of no-fault divorce laws, were approved by the body once more, language involving immigration became even harsher. Support of a guest-worker program was nixed. Additionally, the platform called for a blanket prohibition on sanctuary cities and the end of the Texas Dream act, which allows for in-State tuition to be given to undocumented immigrants who were brought to this country as children.
Furthermore, a plank was inserted that endorsed “gay conversion therapy,” a universally condemned and cruel practice to change the sexual orientation of gay people. In a small semblance of humanity, the language referring to homosexuality as a condition that “tears at the fabric of society” was axed. However, given the recent flareup about the Log Cabin Republicans being denied representation at the convention, this is truly not all that surprising. Within the small subsection of the community who frequents the Texas GOP convention, a nearly unanimous disgust with LGBT people is not all that surprising.
The guest worker plank and limited call for clemency were adopted in 2012 under what was called the “Texas Solution” at the time. However, since State Senator Dan Patrick (R-Harris County), a fiery arch-conservative with some serious nativist issues, decisively won the Lieutenant Governor Republican primary, things have changed for the Republicans. Reactions to this change in policy were mostly negative from those outside of the convention. Among those there, though, the tone was far different. Some delegates even openly compared limited clemency to negotiations with terrorists.
I wrote about the implications of all this a couple of days ago in The Daily Texan, where I explained that the Republican Party has quite the choice to make about its long term future. By adopting both an anti-immigrant and an anti-gay platform, the party continues to lock itself out of growing portions of the population, particularly local ones.
Rep. Jason Villalba (R-Dallas County), a more pragmatic Republican, was quick to castigate this action, lamenting the future of a Republican Party taken over by the meanspirited. “The Texas Solution, which calls for thoughtful and common-sense immigration reform, is no more,” Villalba said. “Fellow Republicans, it’s time to take back our party. If we don’t. We won’t have a party at all.”
I must agree with the good Representative’s reasoning. However, as you must be familiar with if you have ever read this publication before, that does not mean it will do any good in the short-term for the Democrats.