Removing Alaska, Texas is the largest state in area. Removing California, Texas is the most populated. Texas is just plain big. It has the largest number of counties within its borders. It is the only state whose flag can be flown at the same level as the United States’. “Everything is bigger in Texas” seems to be true in many respects, and it will be soon true on the national scene of politics.
Politico‘s “Lone Star Rising” article profiles the state and its looming implications on national politics. Ted Cruz‘s election as a US Senator has not dampened his bona fide Tea Party affiliations and perspectives unlike that of Marco Rubio of Florida. John Conryn, Texas’ senior senator, has essentially buddy-upped with Cruz to prevent being ‘primaried’ like what happened to Bob Bennett of Utah by Mike Lee.
Geographically, it is a border state and a microcosm of what is happening to other Republicans on the issue of immigration. The schism between what to do is affecting what Texas politicians will lean on: Texas-sensibility or Republican-orthodoxy. Republican politicians are all over the map of what to do.
In terms of state politics, it is nearly like the antipodes of California. Texas has all Republican statewide offices; California has Democrats occupying all statewide offices. Each state has a supermajority of both houses of its state legislatures occupied. However, unlike California, Texas is being talked about as a swing state in both statewide and presidential terms. Like the Politico article surmises, the demographics of Texas is turning it more blue, but Democrats can’t rely on, and Republicans can’t fear, the growing Hispanic population. Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), one of the twin Castro brothers, said it best, “[I]t’s not going to happen on demographics alone.”
What Texas will do is anyone’s guess, but politicians will be looking to it for the next decade.
- Lone star rising (politico.com)
- Can Democrats Win Texas? Is the GOP Toast? (theamericanconservative.com)
- Rick Perry, Ted Cruz, and the Democratic Future of Texas (ukprogressive.co.uk)