Trump Marquee Texas Supporters
Starting to Flake from Sinking Ship
November 13, 2020
You knew you could assume that President Donald Trump's re-election bid was dead when the two U.S. Senate Republicans from Texas threw their support on Friday behind intelligence briefings for Democratic President-elect Joe Biden.
While U.S. Senator Ted Cruz appeared in recent days to be all in on Trump's campaign to have the general election overturned in the courts, Cornyn had been running from months from a toxic White House in a way that he managed to keep off-the-radar in hopes of escaping the president's wrath.
But the duo's siding with the enemy for the sake of protecting the nation's security could put them dead-center in Trump's sights amid a fusillade of insults that he's firing wildly at Republicans who he now views as incompetent traitors.
The Cruz and Cornyn defections on the issue of bipartisan intel sharing leaves Trump with Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, state GOP Chairman Allen West and Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller as the only brand-name Texas Republicans who've backed the president's push to have judicial appointees invalidate the 2020 election results.
West - a former Florida congressman who's a relatively new Texas resident - plans to lead a so-called Stop the Steal march in Dallas on Saturday with a crew of allies including Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn and former NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch at his side.
Miller - a former state lawmaker who's billed himself as Trump's "man" in Texas - parroted the fallen leader's false assertions about massive election fraud after a conference call with the president last weekend. Patrick, the Trump Texas campaign chair since 2016, demonstrated his unwavering loyalty on Tuesday with the establishment of a $1 million bounty fund for information that could help prove that Biden and the Democrats cheated the president out of his job.
But Patrick and Miller have been mum during the past few days as it's become increasingly evident that Biden will be the president in January in a development that will have the Trump base shriveling down to the hard-core believers who've worshiped him. Trump is teasing them now with threats to run for president again in 2024 in a move that he has to make to keep himself relevant.
The lion's share of Texas Republicans who pay attention to party politics see West as an alien invader who seized the chair's job in the chaotic midst of a state convention meltdown on Zoom in June. But West hasn't been a typical state party leader who's number one priority is unity. A combat veteran who'd been an lieutenant colonel in the Army, West has danced to his own unique drumbeat as a party chief who's been attacking Governor Greg Abbott relentlessly for coronavirus restrictions.
West announced this week that the Republican Party of Texas would not recognize GOP State Rep. Dade Phelan of Beaumont as the new House speaker if he wins the job as expected in January. West portrayed Phelan as a modern-day Benedict Arnold for accepting the support of Democrats in a coalition that has substantially more Republicans.
But Patrick and Miller have been uncharacteristically mum for the past few days as a pair of statewide officials who might not be willing to gamble their political careers any longer on a president who could ruin the GOP's shot at taking the White House back in four years if he keeps the current campaign alive.