GOP cen­sure of Straus is re­ally badge of honor

Austin American-Statesman - - METRO & STATE - Her­man

Back in Oc­to­ber, Texas House Speaker Joe Straus sur­prised us by an­nounc­ing he would not seek re-elec­tion to the House in 2018.

He left open the pos­si­bil­ity — seem­ingly slim — that he’d run for some­thing else some­time. So it was kind of another sur­prise in Austin on Satur­day when he was the sub­ject of vot­ing.

Keep­ing his un­beaten record in­tact, Straus, R-San An­to­nio, pre­vailed in that vote as the State Repub­li­can Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee hon­ored him for his coura­geous dis­play of in­de­pen­dence and lead­er­ship at the House helm. The vote was an over­whelm­ing 44-19 as the GOP com­mit­tee eas­ily amassed the two-thirds vote needed to ap­prove the res­o­lu­tion.

The com­mit­tee, of course, called it a cen­sure. But what’s in­tended by some as a cen­sure can be read by oth­ers as an honor. That’s the deal in this case as the com­mit­tee sin­gled out Straus for po­lit­i­cal courage.

In its cen­sure res­o­lu­tion, the com­mit­tee’s mem­bers said Straus had taken three or more ac­tions “in op­po­si­tion to the core prin­ci­ples” in the Texas GOP plat­form.

I guess that’s one way of de­scrib­ing what Straus did. Another way would be to say Straus prop­erly rep­re­sented the peo­ple who sent him to Austin and, in his eyes, did what he thought best for all Tex­ans. Seems like a rea­son­able thing for an elected of­fi­cial to do.

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