Friday, February 14, 2014
Sleeper U.S. House Race in Northwest Texas
Granbury, TX -- Cahnman's Musings was in town to cover the packed Texas House candidate forum between 9-term incumbent (Joe Straus lieutenant) Jim Keffer and grassroots challenger Cullen Crisp. It's not a secret that Jim Keffer is in trouble. The Texas House forum was similar to other events this cycle. Crisp hit Keffer for increasing spending by 26% and Keffer made the usual excuses. The real story, however, was the U.S. House forum that took place immediately prior.
5-term incumbent Michael Conaway is a George W. Bush crony from West Texas. His opponent, Wade Brown, currently serves as an officer in the United States' Marine Corps reserve. Brown is taking his second shot at Conaway, having waged an unsuccessful campaign in 2012.
Brown hit Conaway for his vote in favor of TARP in 2008 and several other atrocious pieces of legislation in the ensuing years. Conaway made the same excuses D.C. Republicans always make. As a point of comparison, Conaway's voting record is very similar to John Cornyn.
Brown, by contrast, offered a detailed plan to force Obama and Harry Reid to negotiate. Brown's plan begins with across the board spending cuts to every line item of the Federal Budget and increases the political pain on Democrats from there. In the event that Democrats refuse to negotiate, Wade Brown is willing to shut down the Federal Government indefinitely.
Brown hammered U.S. House Republicans, led by John Bohener, for their failure to stop Obama's illegal and unconstitutional war in Libya. The Constitution and Federal law make clear that the President DOES NOT have the authority to commit American armed forces to a major conflict absent Congressional authorization. Unfortunately, Republicans under John Bohener failed to stop Obama's war in Libya, and Benghazi was the result.
The candidates also clashed over John Bohener's "leadership" (or lack thereof). Conaway said "Bohener's doing a good job." Brown said Bohener "led the House the wrong way" and that "I'm not going to sacrifice my vote for the home team."
This is an interesting race. It's not on anyone's radar screen outside the district. Based on the crowd reaction in the packed room, however, it's obvious where the energy in this race lies. While Brown's campaign is severely underfunded, Conaway's nervousness was palpable. Keep an eye on CD-11 March 4th.
We went out to lunch with some local Tea Party leaders after the forum. We interviewed Wade Brown at lunch. This is our interview:
Visit Wade's website here; donate to his campaign here.