There is an old saying in politics – follow the money. It appears that is exactly what Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, and Republican Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan did when they collectively accepted over $250,000 from Friends of UT Southwestern Center, also known as FOMCPAC. The three were recently involved in shutting down multiple pieces of key legislation that would have prevented hormone treatment and surgery from being provided to supposed transgender children in the state.
Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick led the pack by receiving over $120,000 from FOMCPAC, followed by Governor Abbott collecting more than $85,000, and Texas Republican House Speaker Dade Phelan netting $50,000 from the same PAC just in 2020 alone.
Tracy Shannon, the Director of the Texas Mass Resistance activist group, proclaimed that House Speaker Phelan’s decision to announce a recess last week effectively killed SB 1311’s chances of passing. S.B. 1311 would have denied liability insurance for doctors who participate in transgender surgeries or chemical castrations for children, defined as anyone under 18 years of age.
Republican Rep. Stephanie Klick, who had ample opportunity herself to block these bills in her role as the Chair of the House Health Committee, failed to act. She also received $4,000 from FOMCPAC in campaign donations since 2015.
Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller urged Governor Abbott during an appearance on the Tucker Carlson Show to support the legislation. “I wish our governor, Greg Abbott, would use some of his political powers and political capital to get this [bill] moving. He’s just silent on it; we need him to weigh in,” he persisted. “I’m a statewide elected official, I’m the Ag Commissioner, but I’m weighing in. I think it’s that important.”
Governor Abbott’s performance over the past year on many issues such as these make him vulnerable during next year’s Republican primaries. Don Huffines, who is considered by many to be a leading candidate to usurp Governor Abbott next March, recently promised, “As [Texas} Governor, I will end the barbaric practice of these abusive therapies on two-year-olds and the mutilation of Texas children will come to an end. We are out of time. No more excuses.”
Former Texas State Rep. Matt Rinaldi recently stated,” The plot to kill H.B. 1399 was a ‘team effort’ by the Phelan leadership team. HB1399, which was killed last week, would have stripped doctors of their ability to acquire liability insurance if they engaged in child transgender surgeries or chemical castrations at their practices. The bill was slow-walked the entire way by Reps. Klick and Burrows, presumably under orders from the Speaker [Dade Phelan],” he continued.
“The fact that House Republicans would work so hard to preserve sex change surgeries for minors is beyond contempt,” Rinaldi concluded. “The Texas GOP needs a housecleaning next primary.”
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