Take the partisanship out of it. Are Republicans competent?

by | Jul 24, 2019 | Policy

Set aside for a moment the bad behavior of Trump and his Republican Party. That’s been covered ad nauseam. And forget, too, the progressive worldview. What about the GOP’s objective effectiveness, their basic competence, both nationally and in Texas?

Let’s start with Trump

ICE raids. Much touted and publicized for weeks, they didn’t amount to a hill of beans. 35of 2,500 undocumented folks were found. The president said “millions” would be rounded up — you know the “bad hombres,” as he once said. It gets worse: American citizens, like the 18-year old guy born in Dallas, were caught up in Trump’s pitiful dragnet. 

U.S. Census. Trump lost badly at the Supreme Court because he had a legal argument. The court’s ruling called Trump’s rationale for including a citizenship question in the 2020 Census — to enforce the Voting Rights Act, his administration said —“contrived” and a “distraction.” Translation: They made it up. 

Immigration. The president has said repeatedly he wants to stop the flow of immigrants into the country. But the influx of people into the U.S. has increased substantially since he’s been president. Border Patrol apprehended 132,887 migrants crossing the U.S. Mexico border this past May. 

Migrant detention centers. Then in June, his Administration didn’t have its act together to take care of the asylum-seekers who knocked on the door in Texas. The conditions in the detention centers were and are unsanitary. 

Health care. For years Republicans (including Sen. John Cornyn) have said they would pass their own health care bill to repeal and replace Obamacare. That hasn’t happened, despite having total and complete control of the entire federal government for two years. How’s that for paralysis?

Drug prices. Despite Trump’s repeated promises, he has not brought drug prices down. Not one cent. 

The shutdown. Trump shut the government down last year. He got nothing for it. 

Now for Texas Republicans

We could go on with Trump but it gets old, so let’s pivot to the Texas GOP. 

The voter purge. Led by the GOP, it was a bust. They rounded up 95,000 Texans and accused them of possible voter fraud. Turns out tens of thousands were eligible voters, even naturalized citizens who paid their dues become citizens. The Republican Secretary of State was forced to resign in disgrace, leaving Gov. Abbott with egg on his face. 

Weed. The GOP-led legislature screwed up, despite now blaming law enforcement officials for the legislative blunder. They say small amounts of weed is still illegal, and it is. But it’s now very difficult to enforce the law. (Incompetence can sometimes be a good thing.)

Property taxes. Much vaunted by some Republicans, it’s bogus. Taxes won’t go down. “This bill will not reduce anyone’s taxes,” said state Rep. Dustin Burrows, a Republican. I have not ever said it would and I’m not going to tell anybody that it would.”

Health care. Texas is the uninsured capital of the country. Republicans have done nothing to fix that, despite having complete and total control of state government for decades. Their base wants action on health care.

Bathroom bill. All of Texas’ oxygen was sucked up for more than six months during the 2017 legislative session with where transgender people go to the restroom. That GOP-led debate overtook everything: taxes, public education, jobs – you name it. In the end, right-wing Republicans lost. 

The Grand Old Party has never liked to govern all that much, or been particularly good at in the past decade. And it shows. 

Photo: Tom Pennington / Getty Images

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