HOUSTON, July 30, 2019 – The Democrat-controlled Harris County Commissioners Court today voted 3-2 split along party lines to approve a $97 million payment to settle a flawed bail reform lawsuit and adopt a resolution undermining ICE, supporting sanctuary city status, and reducing public safety. Harris County Republican Party Chairman Paul Simpson released the following statements regarding today's County Commissioners Court meeting:
On Bail Reform Settlement:
"Democrat County Commissioners today put criminals ahead of victims in Harris County, just to advance their radical agenda. Their $97 million payment to settle a flawed bail reform lawsuit is not only fiscally irresponsible, but will keep the revolving door of justice at the courthouse spinning so more criminals can roam the streets of Harris County. To satisfy their radical supporters, Democrat Commissioners are sacrificing our safety and endangering the law enforcement professionals who work everyday to protect Harris County neighborhoods."
On Immigration Resolution:
"Democrat County Commissioners in Harris County joined AOC and the 'socialist squad' today by adopting Democrat Adrian Garcia's resolution that demeans and undermines the brave men and women of ICE who protect our borders, while supporting sanctuary city status that reduces public safety and overloads our schools, hospitals, and resources. It's time Democrats took this national security and humanitarian crisis seriously. That starts with recognizing that we are a nation of laws and the concerns of law-abiding citizens come first."
HOUSTON, July 8, 2019 – In advance of the Commissioners Court meeting on July 9, Harris County Republican Party Chair Paul Simpson released the following statement regarding Democrat County Judge Lina Hidalgo’s decision to change the Harris County budgeting process:
“Despite her rhetoric, Democrat County Judge Lina Hidalgo made the swift decision to change the budget process on a ‘whim’ rather than stand for the citizens of Harris County. This move was not rooted in science and nothing more than a deceptive, political money grab to advance Judge Hidalgo’s liberal agenda neglecting the needs of all of Harris County.” – Harris County Republican Party Chair Paul Simpson
When asked by District Attorney Kim Ogg for funds for additional prosecutors, Judge Hidalgo said:
“When we make a decision on a whim, we get something like the recent exposé from The Chronicle…That is why the budget process is a process.”
– Judge Lina Hidalgo, Commissioners Court 6/25/19
“Harris County Commissioners Court on Tuesday rejected District Attorney Kim Ogg’s request for more staff to handle fallout from the Houston Police Department’s botched Pecan Park drug raid.… The court voted 3-2 along party lines.… Commissioners Rodney Ellis and Adrian Garcia joined County Judge Lina Hidalgo in turning down the request.” (Houston Chronicle, 6/25/19)
However, when Commissioner Rodney Ellis used a vague agenda item to change the Harris County budget process and reallocate millions of dollars in mobility funds, Judge Hidalgo said:
“So, if the proposal is to change one allocation for a 25 [percent] allocation just because – until we come up with some science, I would be for that.”
– Judge Lina Hidalgo, Commissioners Court 6/25/19
“The three Democrats on the Harris County Commissioners Court, in the latest flex of their newly won majority, have begun shifting road money to their two precincts and away from the two Republican-controlled ones.… The court voted 3-2 along party lines Tuesday to divide the funds evenly among the precincts, shifting 15 percent of the dollars — a swing of more than $9 million per year, based on recent averages — from Republican-held precincts to Democrat-held ones.” (Houston Chronicle, 6/25/19)
As a reminder, Judge Hidalgo campaigned on transparency and public engagement:
"In everything we do, we represent all the people of Harris County – not just the ones who voted for us. It's our job to do right by them; to be worthy of the trust placed upon us." – Judge Lina Hidalgo, January 1, 2019
“‘The public has a right to know before we make major financial changes of how we finance infrastructure,’ Cagle said. ‘This is not fair. We need to have an opportunity to discuss this in the public. To change it with no notice is wrong. We ought to have transparency — real transparency.’” (Houston Chronicle, 6/25/19)
Democrat County Judge Lina Hidalgo Uses Skewed Survey by Left-Wing Organizers to Create Countywide Agenda
HOUSTON, June 20, 2019 – Instead of caring for the needs of all Harris County citizens, Democrat County Judge Lina Hidalgo is using left-wing organizers and campaign organizations like Texas Organizing Project (TOP) to craft policy and priorities. That Democrat Judge Hidalgo would use a biased skewed "survey" to govern is irresponsible and blatantly disregards the needs and voices of the citizens she was elected to serve.
(Check out these reports for a refresher on TOP: a Dallas News Feb 2018 story about TOP campaigning for Democrats in Dallas, a House of Reps April 2010 report about TOP as an ACORN successor, and a Texas Monthly article about TOP campaigning for Democrats.)
Just take it from political scientists who recently spoke out to debunk the methodology of Hidalgo's survey:
"Political scientists, however, cautioned that the results should not be used as a basis for public policy because the survey was not representative of Harris County residents as a whole. The poll was designed to over-sample neighborhoods with historically low levels of civic participation, such as Acres Homes, Near Northside, Gulfton and Galena Park."
"'It would be irresponsible to use this document for any serious public policy initiatives, based on the logic that this somehow represents the will, or the opinion, or attitudes of the population of Harris County residents,' said Mark Jones, a political science professor at Rice University.
"The approach, the surveyors’ acknowledged, resulted in disproportionate sampling of economic, racial and ethnic groups. Hispanic and black residents were over-sampled, while white and Asian residents were under-sampled.
"The survey was offered online, though about three-fourths of the responses were collected through canvassing by outside groups, including the Texas Organizing Project, Boat People SOS, Chinese Community Center and Emgage."
"Jay Aiyer, a former political scientist at Texas Southern University said... the survey fails to offer a representative cross-section of Harris County residents...
"'Should this drive policy? Probably not,' Aiyer said."
While Hidalgo's survey explicitly states: "Judge Hidalgo intends to prioritize administrative policies, practices, and funding based on these issues." (Page 3)
According to The Chronicle, she now claims: "...the study was never intended to be scientific. Rather, she said her office wanted to hear from residents who are unlikely to attend events because of work, transportation or family obstacles."
Even the Houston Chronicle's Assistant City Editor questioned the County Judge's approach:
Tomorrow, Democrat presidential candidates will be in Houston for a campaign forum at Texas Southern University. The Harris County Republican Party is sending a loud and clear message to out of touch Democrats:
Radical ideas like "Medicare for All" and the "Green New Deal" would destroy Houston's economy and kill jobs.
We're working hard to spread the word that liberal Democrat policies are wrong for Houston, wrong for Texas and wrong for America. Your contribution will help fuel our efforts to win in 2020! Contribute today by clicking the link below!
Texas taxpayers have spoken: property taxes and school finance reform are major priorities for this legislative session and our Republican leaders are taking action. Congratulations to Chairman Dan Huberty and all of Harris County’s Republican representatives for delivering a critical piece of those efforts today with the passage of House Bill 3. We’re confident that working together, Republican leadership in the House and Senate will make meaningful reforms for Texans this session.
Photo: Emree Weaver
IJR.com, March 23 - The morning after special counsel Robert Mueller sent off his final report, 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke made it clear he still believes there’s collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump.
O’Rourke said he thinks Trump, “beyond a shadow of a doubt, sought to, however ham-handedly, collude with the Russian government, a foreign power, to undermine and influence our elections.”
Photo: Erik Drost/Flickr and Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
KPRC Radio, The Pursuit of Happiness, March 19 - If you live anywhere in Houston you probably noticed the giant cloud of smoke emanating from ITC, a Deer Park petrochemical storage facility on Houston's east side. Should we be concerned that a giant black cloud can be seen from miles away?
No, said Democrat Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo. Don't worry! Everything is fine. Your health isn't at any risk, she assured us, and you have nothing to worry about. She said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality data has already been made public and everything is just fine. But according to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality website, data was not made publicly available when Lina made this statement.
Joel Eisenbaum, a reporter from Click2Houston who's brave enough to do real journalism, asked novice Democrat Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo to release the air quality data. Hildalgo said the data has been released. Again, it wasn't.