As early voting for the Texas Primary draws near, THSC is reminded of past elections and past promises that were made by past candidates. Numerous promises have been made, and far too many have been broken.
Before the beginning of the 2015 campaign cycle, THSC committed to strengthening the vetting process for interviewing and endorsing candidates. THSC fights every day to defend home schooling and parental rights, but Texas needs legislators who are open, honest, and just as dedicated to this cause as THSC.
A prime example of why THSC is focusing and strengthening the vetting in this primary cycle is Texas State Rep. Debbie Riddle. Despite aligning herself with THSC values and principles in past races, Representative Riddle has begun to trend more and more left while moving closer and closer to House leadership in Austin. In addition to earning extremely low scores on several conservative scorecards in the past, including Texas Right to Life and Empower Texans, Representative Riddle especially betrayed the trust of THSC and many other conservative groups and individuals during the 2015 84th Texas Legislature.
First and foremost, Riddle was the primary roadblock for THSC’s House Bill 524, also known as the Texas Parental Rights Restoration Act, getting through the Texas House. This bill would have closed a loophole in the Grandparent Access Statute that allows for single parents to lose their children to vindictive in-laws without evidence that the parents were unfit to raise their own children.
This past legislative session Representative Riddle was the swing vote in the Juvenile Justice and Family Issues committee in the Texas House when THSC’s bill came to a vote.
Representative Riddle was the only Republican legislator on the committee to withhold her vote on the bill.
After bringing in numerous single parents to testify about how this issue had devastated their families, as well as several family law experts who identified for the legislators what the key problems were with the law, Representative Riddle informed the committee that she had changed her vote and could no longer support the legislation.
Responding immediately, THSC’s lobby team followed up continually with Riddle’s office, attempting to get an audience with her before the critical deadline for getting bills out of committee. During those two weeks Representative Riddle was consistently unavailable for an audience and was unable to even offer information about her specific concerns on the bill.
THSC’s lobby team made visits, left messages, and dropped off literature with office staff, explaining changes that had been made that might address her concerns (of which Riddle still had never articulated). After nearly two weeks of attempts to reach Representative Riddle, THSC finally got word that she was willing to support the bill again.
Those who worked the legislative process daily, like Representative Riddle, knew clearly that the two weeks it had taken to regain her support had been the same critical two weeks needed to meet with other legislators to gain their support and get the bill to the House Floor on time. As a result of these delays caused by Representative Riddle, the bill died in committee.
Untold numbers of parents in Texas will be devastated by this draconian statute before the next legislative session because of these tactics by Representative Riddle.
In addition to this, Rep. Debbie Riddle effectively killed HB 562, which is known as American Law for American Courts. This bill would have prevented Texas courts from using foreign law over Texas law in our legal system. For someone who so clearly states on her website that she “wholeheartedly agree(s) that no foreign law should supersede Texas law, Federal law, or our Constitution,” it seems inconsistent that she would cease to support this bill authored by Texas State Representative Jeff Leach with the help of Texas Eagle Forum.
Last, but certainly not least, one of Representative Riddle’s other high profile mistakes during the 84th Legislative Session was on Senate Bill 575 in the House Calendars committee. The bill, which was authored by Texas State Sen. Larry Taylor with the help of Texas Right to Life, would have prohibited insurance companies from covering abortions in the state of Texas. According to Texas Right to Life, Representative Riddle originally voted for the bill to not be placed on the calendar in order for a hearing on the Texas House Floor to be scheduled. Once she had made this critical mistake, she quickly asked the chairman for a second vote. This time, she reversed her vote, and the bill was placed in the middle of the calendar. The damage had already been done, however, because the bill was placed so low on the calendar, it would not be heard before the deadline.
Conservatives all over the state are fed up with empty promises made by false conservatives and the time has come when legislators are to be held accountable for their decisions. There is no place in the legislature for politicians who lie and who do not properly represent their conservative constituents.
How to Stop Rep. Debbie Riddle?
The best way to stop a false conservative is to vote in a true conservative. Therefore, the Texas Home School Coalition is proud to endorse Valoree Swanson over Representative Riddle for House District 150. Valoree is a home school mom and a dedicated and conservative public servant who has been endorsed by countless other conservative groups and individuals.The best way to stop a false conservative is to vote in a true conservative. #KeepTXStrong Click To Tweet
Valoree is an example that everyone on the Hill in Austin can look to as a truthful and transparent candidate for State Representative. As a parent, we know that she has the best intentions for furthering parental rights in the State of Texas. As a home school mom, we know that she believes in the home school movement and that she will fight in Austin for home school rights.
We are more than excited to see how Valoree Swanson will help us in Austin to continue to Keep Texas Families Free.
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