Chad’s Morning Brief: Rick Perry Showing Off His Leadership Skills on Ebola, Why Texas Won’t Turn Blue Anytime Soon, and Other Top Stories
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of October 7, 2014.
Governor Rick Perry has yet another opportunity to show off his leadership skills in dealing with the Ebola scare in Dallas. Yesterday Perry held a press conference to announce a new task force according to the Dallas Morning News.
Gov. Rick Perry today announced the formation of a 17-member task force to better the state’s readiness to deal with pandemic diseases.
The formation of the blue-ribbon group followed lapses at Dallas’ Presbyterian Hospital that sent a man infected with Ebola home.
Perry pointed out the need to improve screening procedures and build on existing preparedness and response.
Dr. Brett Giroir, the head of Texas A&M Health Science Center, will serve as director of the task force, which includes Dr. Peter Hotez, who is the founding dean of Baylor College of Medicine’s National School of Tropical Medicine.
In addition are state officials from environmental, health and public safety agencies.
With the Ebola scare, Perry has the chance to show that he can do something that the American people don't see with the federal government, taking action. Just as he did with the border crisis, Perry can show leadership on an issue effecting the state.
You can read the entire story by clicking the link above.
Hispanics Turning Texas Blue?
As election day gets closer, more and more outlets are paying attention to the statewide races here in Texas. Battleground Texas and other Democrats have said in the past that Hispanics will be key in turning Texas blue. POLITICO took a look at that argument recently.
You’ve also probably heard that this Hispanic surge is turning Texas, which has been a reliably Republican state in presidential politics since 1980, blue. Hispanics tend to vote Democrat (Obama took some 63 percent of the Hispanic vote in Texas in 2012), and the Texas Democratic Party is taking full advantage, initiating a major drive to register Hispanic voters and recruiting candidates who can identify with this growing ethnic group. Two years ago, the state Democratic Party chose its first Hispanic state chairman, a former county judge from the Rio Grande Valley. Much talk in Democratic political circles involves the Hispanic Castro twins—Julian, the U.S. secretary of Housing & Urban Development, and Joaquin, the U.S. congressman from San Antonio. Meanwhile, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is busy trying to win back the Hispanic voters she lost in the party’s primary when 27 counties with large Hispanic populations voted for her underfunded and unknown opponent. Davis has made more than three dozen campaign stops in South Texas, where Hispanics are already a majority of the population, and devoted nearly $300,000 for spots on Spanish-language television channels.
The problem for Democrats, and their hope to build a Democratic majority by motivating Hispanic voters, is that the numbers are misleading. Yes, Texas’ 2014 population of roughly 26 million includes some 10 million Hispanics, but less than half of them are eligible to vote. Those Census Bureau counts from 2010 include at least one million undocumented non-citizens as well as a sizeable number of student visa and green card holders. And then there’s the three million Hispanics under the age of 18.
Moreover, 30 percent of Hispanics in Texas are aged 18 to 29, a cohort associated with frequent job and residence changes, less likely to have school-aged children and more likely to rent rather than own a home—all characteristics associated with a lower propensity to vote. While 61 percent of eligible Anglos and 63 percent of African-Americans voted in Texas in 2012, only 38.8 percent of Hispanic citizens did so.
Even if the Texas Democratic Party were to succeed in registering large numbers of Hispanic voters—and get them to the polls—who is to say that they would reliably pull the lever for Democrats? Hispanics are generally more conservative than their counterparts in other states. According to pollster Michael Baselice, approximately 46 percent of Hispanics in Texas say they are conservative, 36 percent describe themselves as moderates and only 18 percent choose the term liberal—percentages that mirror the overall state electorate. In 2012, although Mitt Romney obtained only 27 percent of the Hispanic vote in other states, a handful of pre- and post-electionsurveys showed him receiving 36-37 percent of the Hispanic vote in Texas. And Romney’s showing was actually a few points below the average GOP performance among Hispanic voters in the state over the past decade, a conclusion verified by PolitiFact Texas, an impartial media fact-checker.
Texas Republicans haven’t exactly been asleep at the wheel. Under the leadership of state chairman Steve Munisteri, and with financial support from the national GOP, the party has retained a permanent outreach staff towards Hispanics, with full-time field representatives in Corpus Christi and the Rio Grande Valley and field offices in Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and El Paso. Though still a small percentage of the 750 elected Hispanics in Texas, the number elected as Republicans increased from 58 to 78 in 2012. And while Wendy Davis courts the Hispanic vote, her Republican opponent Greg Abbott is pointing out to voters his wife will be the state’s first Hispanic first lady, and his mother-in-law is vouching for her son-in-law in both English- and Spanish-language television commercials. Abbott is on track to spend more than one million dollars on Spanish-language television ads.
You can read the full story by clicking on the link above.
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These and many more topics coming up on today’s edition of The Chad Hasty Show. Tune in mornings 8:30-11am on News/Talk 790 KFYO, streaming online at kfyo.com, and now on your iPhone and Android device with the radioPup App. All guest interviews can be heard online in our podcast section after the show at kfyo.com.