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Former deputy indicted on bribery charges

Photo: File

EDINBURG — A former Hidalgo County sheriff’s deputy was indicted earlier this month on bribery charges, according to court records.

Michael Lee Serrano, 39, of Mercedes, was indicted March 12 by a grand jury. He is charged with intentionally and knowingly soliciting and agreeing to ……. read more here.

 

By LORENZO ZAZUETA-CASTRO

Bus company gets restraining order against Hidalgo

Photo by Nathan Lambrecht/nlambrecht@themonitor.com

People wait in a large line to board shuttle buses headed for McAllen Thursday morning, March 26, 2015 at the bus terminal just north of the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge. S to N Transport was ticketed by Hidalgo Police recently for operating in the city, the terminal is owned by the City of McAllen.

Read more here.

By SKY CHADDE

Abbott pushes border plan during Valley visit

Photo by Nathan Lambrecht/nlambrecht@themonitor.com

WESLACO — Gov. Greg Abbott said the plan to send National Guard troops home cannot happen overnight and not until his more than $700 million border security plan is passed. Abbott, along with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a likely Republican presidential contender, toured the border Friday morning as passengers aboard a Texas Department of Public Safety helicopter.

Walker did not make himself available to media during the brief news conference afterward.

 

Read more here.

By Lorenzo Zazueta-Castro

RERop-ed: The TX Battle Flag Flap

Image: Texas Dept of Motor Vehicles/AP

The official flag of the Confederacy, popularly known as the Stars and Bars, was a field of three red and white horizontal stripes with a blue field in the upper left corner containing seven white stars arranged in a circle.  Unfortunately, it was close enough to the Union flag that the two could be easily confused on the battlefield.

Confederate troops in the field, therefore – including the 1st Texas Heavy Artillery at the battle of Sabine Pass in September 1863 – carried the Confederate battle flag, a square red field with a white-fringed blue X in the center containing thirteen white stars.  The Confederate battle flag, known affectionately as the Southern Cross, was never the official flag of the Confederacy.

An elongated version of the battle flag, known as the Confederate navy jack, was flown by Confederate ships and is the version that flies proudly today over the South Carolina Capitol building.  Unfortunately, the navy jack, a symbol of States’ Rights, has been hijacked by hate groups such as neo-Nazis and has been denounced as a symbol of slavery by Black leaches such as Al Sharpton.

The State of Texas, like many other States, issues specialty license plates commemorating an event or an organization.  To date there have been 480 such plates issued. Anyone can have their own specialty plates stamped for a fee – well, almost anyone.

In 2011, a Texas organization known as Sons of Confederate Veterans applied for a specialty plate that contains a representation of the Confederate battle flag – the original square version, not the Confederate navy jack that’s used by KKK clones to promote White supremacy.

The Texas motor vehicle board rejected the design, citing their opinion that it would be “offensive” to some Texans.  The Sons of Confederate Veterans sued.  After he 5th Circuit Court of Appeals found for the Sons of Confederate Veterans, the State appealed, and on Monday 23 March, the case reached the Supreme Court.

Austin attorney R. James George Jr. argued Monday that the license plates are protected under the First Amendment as free speech, while Texas Solicitor General Scott Keller argued that free speech is not being inhibited because the driver can still place a bumper sticker next to the license plate.  He further argued that the plates have the word “Texas” on them and hence represent State speech.

But when justice Elena Kagan Asked Solicitor General Keller, “Does that have any limits ?  Suppose that Texas approved a license plate that said ‘Vote Republican,’ but refused to approve a license plate that said ‘Vote Democratic?'” Mr. Keller was speechless.

The Justices asked many interesting questions during Monday’s open arguments, apparently trying to maintain an aura of decorum in the face of such childishness.  And I have a question of my own.  “What in blazes is the State of Texas doing arguing in front of the Supreme Court over a license plate?”

Nine southern States allow license plates with the Confederate battle flag displayed.  Furthermore, as someone has pointed out, you can buy a license plate frame brandishing the battle flag at any truck stop.

And who gave the State of Texas the authority to protect us from being “offended?”  I would strongly suggest that Attorney General Paxton focus his efforts on the business of Texas and stop persecuting its citizens on the basis of their political allegiances.

G E Kruckeberg

G E Kruckeberg

 

Famous Actor Says Obama Admin. ‘Must’ Do This Immediately Now That Bergdahl Has Been Charged With Desertion

Gary Sinise (File Photo)

After the U.S. Army announced Bowe Bergdahl would be charged with desertion on Wednesday, actor Gary Sinise said the Obama administration “must explain” the controversial Bergdahl trade that set five Taliban commanders free.

More importantly, he said the administration owes an ……… read more here.

By Jason Howerton

Local Governments Have A Spending Problem

Photo: empowertexans.com 

Despite the narrative advanced by many politicians, Texas’ local governments have an enormous spending problem. In total, over the last twenty years, local spending growth has increased nearly twice as fast as the combined rate of population growth and inflation.  The government burden for each Texan is growing.

Not all local governments are run amok, but interestingly, the latest efforts to require voter-consent for tax increases are unanimously met with opposition.  It raises the question: for those local politicians who are governing responsibly, why fear greater citizen-scrutiny?

In addition to overall spending, Texas has the second highest local debt per person in the United States.  Unsurprisingly, politicians interested in preserving their own power meet every single pro-taxpayer reform with vicious opposition, all in the name of “local control.”

But local control is simply a governing preference—liberty, however, is a governing principle. After all, unlimited government at any level undermines liberty.

Cities and counties blame runaway school districts for the debt epidemic.  School districts blame the ….. read more here.

by Ross Kecseg

 

Infiltration? The Alarming Details Surrounding Alleged Hezbollah Member’s Arrest in Texas

Hezbollah flag (File Photo)

The FBI recently arrested a San Antonio man on charges that he lied to gain entry into the U.S. and then attempted to obtain a sensitive position at the Department of Defense.

The man, identified as Wissam Allouce, 44, appeared in court for an initial hearing on Friday afternoon, the San Antonio Express-News reports. He supposedly shook his head as U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry Bemporad read the charges against him in a federal indictment. The judge ordered ………. read more here.

By Jason Howerton

 

RERop-ed: Republican Party of Texas,Tom Mechler Takes Umbrage with Conservative Outliers

Photo:www.ushistory.org

Newly elected leader of the Republican Party of Texas, Tom Mechler lays out his vision and mission for the party in a recent blogpost in TexasGOPVote http://www.texasgopvote.com/family/chairman-tom-mechlers-vision-republican-party-texas-007624. He suggests that he will ensure that Democrats will not take seats from hardwon districts represented by Gilbert Pena (144) and Rick Galindo (117). He goes on to say he will address the “distorted rhetoric” of outlier conservative groups critical of the Republican Party. Further, he will advocate for more of the Republican Party platform to become law.

Since the last Republican Convention in Ft. Worth the platform on immigration bypassed an official stance on “guest workers” but only narrowly. It was a hard-fought manuever that allowed conservative grassroots to maintain an enforcement position in the platform. Mechler supported a “guest-worker” provision.

It is obvious then that Mechler calls out the outliers in opposing open borders labor practices while supporting an Hispanic Republican, Pena who can forward a “guest-worker” bill, and importantly, calling them good “conservatives”. The guest-worker & driver licenses for illegals bills come up regularly in the legislative session as well. These are widely supported by the business community and many influential players in the GOP.

Pena’s bill HB1602 (http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/84R/billtext/html/HB01602I.htm) laying out a state-run migrant worker pilot project that includes a Commission on Immigration and Migration with appointed members. Obviously proponents of deport and enforce our immigration laws will be nowhere near gaining a seat on the commission. The generous “inclusion” of members of the public on this commission must be:

  • residents of this state
  • with due respect for, geography, diversity, education with post-graduate degrees related to the immigrant community
  • or an appointment by the Governor, Lt-Governor or Speaker with a representative from a community-based organization
  • a faith-based organization,philanthropic,a business,including an immigrant entrepreneur,etc…

Please see my posts on City of Houston’s Office of International Communities developed by the liberal Mayor of Houston, Annise Parker to understand the aims of these immigrant advocacy organizations in sync with all manner of governmental and institutional support and collaboration below:

http://www.stopthemagnet.com/blog/city-houstons-collaborative-plan-legal-networking-strategies-legalize-illegals

http://www.stopthemagnet.com/blog/city-houston-celebrates-diversity-refugee-fest-turkish-house

Finally, check out the “cheek” here in creating a memoranda of understanding with Mexico for this pilot program. There is plenty of left-wing buzzwords in the bill that pave the way for the #NewAmericans, Obama’s “seedlings” and undercut citizens rights in who is permitted to crash their communities but yet pay for these “workers” through taxation. This bill is all about forced multiculturalism and reducing the relevance of American workers. Plain scary. Read it all

If this is a “conservative” representative that Mechler wants to fight for while turning his back on his own countrymen, being an outlier of the Republican Party should be a mark of honor.

Long May We Wave,

Liz Theiss

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In Texas, State Leaders Attack Local Governments for Going Big on Regulations

Photo: www.huffingtonpost.com

They say everything is bigger in Texas. Some argue that the saying even applies to the state’s local governments.

Conservatives often contend that more decision making should be done at the local level, but what if local governments overreach their authority?

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, has been vocal about his opposition to what he characterizes as an overabundance of regulations implemented at the local level in his state.

During remarks at the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s 13th annual Policy Orientation in January, Abbott said that “the truth is, Texas is being California-ized with bag bans, fracking bans, tree-cutting bans…We are forming a patchwork quilt of bans and rules and regulations that are eroding the Texas Model.”

Read more here.

By Kate Scanlon

Walker Denies Changing Stance on Illegal Immigrants

(Darren McCollester/Getty Images)

Likely 2016 Republican U.S. presidential hopeful Scott Walker’s stance on illegal immigrants remains unchanged, his spokeswoman said on Thursday, disputing a report that he favored letting them stay in the country and eventually become eligible for citizenship.

Kirsten Kukowski, a spokeswomen for the Wisconsin governor, labeled as “erroneous” a Wall Street Journal report detailing what the newspaper called Walker’s shift in stance on the matter.

“Governor Walker has been very clear that he does not support amnesty and believes that border security must be established and the rule of law must be followed,” Kukowski said in an emailed statement.

Read more here.

Newsmax