Notes from the June 9th Temporary Platform Committee Meeting

These notes from the June 9th Temporary Platform Committee Meeting provide the TexasGOPVote community an inside look as to the work being done on the construction of the Platform for the Republican Party of Texas.

Business and Economy: Under the section titled Free Market for Utilities: An amendment was proposed stating that all property insurance should be based on free market principles. The amendment was passed and the section was changed to include the statement, "We support that all property insurance rates should be set through free-market forces alone. We support efforts to shrink the Texas Insurance Association to reduce the liability it imposes on taxpayers."

Federal Tax Reform: The existing platform stated that we urge the IRS to be abolished and the 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to be repealed, an in its place, a national sales tax to be instated. The wording was changed to say "Once the IRS is abolished" and the 16th Amendment repealed, there should be a national sales tax. Committee members were concerned that the national sales tax could come before the end of federal income tax. They wanted to make sure that Texans are not burdened with both federal income tax and a national sales tax.

Additional tax cuts listed in the resolution to be made permanent include income tax, capital gains tax, and estate tax.

A committee member proposed to repeal Obama's moratorium on deep water drilling. He explained that if deep water oil wells are shut down, then we will be shutting off 1-2 million barrels of domestic oil as well as the losing many jobs.

Another committee member argued that the moratorium on deep water drilling due to the BP oil leak is a current topic that does not belong in a platform.

Chairman of the Platform Committee, State Representative Wayne Christian, explained that Obama has appointed a director to oversee and heavily regulate Texas drilling, which is a significant threat. This drilling issue may not be just a current issue, but may have lasting consequences on Texas if something is not done.

One of the committee members who works in the oil and gas field explained that something must be done to protect Texas oil and gas companies that will should not be punished for BP's mistake.

Toll Roads: The platform opposes converting state and federal roads to toll roads without voter approval. Furthermore, the periodic auditing of state agencies is urged.

Preserving Freedom:  Term limits for elected officials were proposed. A committee member cites a study that says that term limits can have adverse affects because special interest groups have more power over candidates since these people do not have the community of constituents to garner support from. Also, if Republicans have term limits and the Democrats do not, then Republicans will not have a chance for seniority and leadership positions in Congress.

The amendment to have term limits was voted down.

Restoring America Freedom and Sovereignty: U.S. Congressman, and TexasGOPVote blogger, John Culberson sent in a note asking for a proposal stating the Texas Legislature and the United States of America should honor Texas' state sovereignty. This passed.

Another amendment was passed in support of strengthening our national intelligence and enhancing inter-agency coordination of intelligence.

Changes made to the platform's stance on immigration include:

Illegal Immigration - Secure the border now

The growing people demand that our leaders secure the border, we oppose illegal immigration, amnesty in any form of citizenship.

An Amendment is proposed: We support legislative action to allow illegal immigrants who have matriculated through all 12 years of the U.S. school system, terminating in high school graduation, to serve in the US Armed Forces.

An Amendment is made to remove 12 years from the wording.

A committee member opposes saying he would like to keep 12 years to capture the young kids who have spent most of their life in America and accept the American culture.

The questioned is raised: What if it's 11 years?

Taking 12 years out of the amendment is passed.

An amendment is proposed: We support requiring all employers to utilize e-verify to ID employees.

The amendment is passed.

A committee member then explains that at some point, we're going to have to draw a line in the sand, say that the government not stopping illegal immigration is wrong, but we're not going to round everyone up and bring them back to Mexico, we need to get them out of the shadows. This is one issue that keeps Latinos from joining the GOP.

Another committee member says that what we can't get past, is that our federal government will not secure our borders. Until we secure the borders, we cannot go forward.

Another committee member points out that no one has addressed what we will do with the 20 million illegal immigrants already here, everyone is just avoiding it.

Debate then ends for the night with more discussion to be held the following morning.

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