South Texas Politics - Jane Cross A Solid Conservative Democrat Takes on Obama Liberal Rubén Hinojosa
During my exploration of South Texas Politics, I talked with McAllen Tea Party President Chuck Stewart about some of their local races and what his group is doing to find the best conservatives to run for office. He told me about a Democrat Candidate for CD-15, Jane Cross, who is running against an Obama-style Democrat Congressman Rubén Hinojosa, one of the more liberal members of the Texas Congressional Delegation.
Stewart encouraged me to visit with Jane Cross and find out for myself. My first reaction, frankly, was why would I want to talk to a Democrat candidate and interview her for a TexasGOPVote article. But what occurred to me is this is really part of the transitional process of South Texas Politics. There are two opportunities to replace liberal Congressmen. The first being in the Primary Election. The second being the November General Election. We certainly have an exciting field of candidates running for this district, but what if we could remove Hinojosa in the Primary Election?
So, I went and spoke with Cross at her lovely home about 10 miles north of the US/Mexico border. What I found was a person who has solid conservative values in many areas. There are certainly some areas where she and I would disagree, but on many very important issues we strongly agree, and she would be a much better representative for the people of CD-15 than her Democrat incumbent.
First of all, Cross won the endorsement of GOOOH (Get Out of Our House), an organization dedicated to replacing the existing Congress with new members who display conservative, Constitution-first values. Cross is a very strong believer in the right of the individual to bear arms as called for in the Second Amendment. She has very conservative views on Border Security and Immigration Reform. We were joined in the video interview with Republican and GOOOH member Mike Meadors and several of her charming pets.
Bob Price, Jane Cross and Mike Meadors discuss South Texas Politics and the race for CD15.
What I ask is that you watch this video with an open mind. Listen to how similar a true conservative Democrat can be to that of a Republican. In the transitional nature of the Rio Grande Valley, we must support conservatism where we can find it, and we certainly found it in Jane Cross.
TexasGOPVotes Bob Price talks with Democrat Jane Cross and fellow Republican Mike Meadors about the race for CD15 in the Democratic Primary.
If you are voting in the Republican Primary election on Tuesday, we have a fine slate of candidates for this seat as well. These candidates are, Dale Brueggemann from Seguin, Rebecca Cervera from McAllen, Jim Kuiken from Weslaco and Eddie Zamora from Edinburg.
Whether you are voting Republican or Democrat this primary season, it is important that we replace the incumbent liberal with a solid conservative. We have great opportunities. Today is the last day of early voting. The Primary Election is on Tuesday, May 29th. Polls are open from 7am to 7pm. Come back here Tuesday night for election coverage.
TRANSCRIPT OF VIDEO
Bob Price: As we continue our exploration of South Texas politics, today we’re going to take a little bit of a different tactic than what most of us are use to looking at. Jane Cross is one of the Democratic Canditates for District 15 running against Hinojosa to take out a Liberal member of the House of Representatives and Mike Meadors is one of the local activists here and was beng considered by GOOOH, the Get Out Of Our House organization, to be a candidate for that as well. If I understand the discussion of that, it came down to basically the two of you? We were just talking with Chuck over at the county Tea party and he had a lot of sentences to say about you, so we thought we would come over here and talk to you a little bit. I think you talk about yourself as a conservative and you a liberal Republican. I think that is an interesting thing to see what the differences between you two are, and how that affects the voters of South Texas, and the Republicans across Texas, and the conservatives across Texas. I think there is a big difference between Conservative Democrats, and what Democrats and what the rest of the country are, and if I could hear you talk a little about that.
Jane Cross: So you want to know why I’m a Conservative Democrat? What makes me a Conservative Democrat is that I remember back when my dad was around and we talked about Conservative values. It was the John F. Kennedy types, when the statement comes out “Its not what you can take from the country, but what you can do for your country” and the famous quote from John F. Kennedy is “It’s not what the country can do for you, it’s what you can do for the country” and it’s a hand up and not a hand out. I think we’ve gotten so skewed from that view, and I think a lot of us, especially my constituents, which run all the way up to Seguin, it’s a 300 mile district, my constituents still believe that. And when they don’t find their congressmen doing what they’re asking, that really upsets them and so when I talk about my conservative values and my conservatism, they’re really appreciating that when I tell them I want to put God back into things, they’re like “Wow, that’s fabulous.” All the people I’ve talked to from here to Seguin and every Dairy Queen that you can possibly imagine, I’ve only had two or three people question the God angle. When you take that over the entire United States, we are a pro-God nation, and somehow we have misinterpreted that, and what makes me a Democrat is that I’m for entitlements, but you have to do something for them. That’s the hand up not the hand out. We have generations that are on the hand outs, and they forgot that it is just a hand up. My constituents are pro-gun, I mean this is Texas, you have to be pro-gun in Texas. Even if you dont like guns, you know someone who has a gun, who hunts, who’s been hunting, who could hunt, who carries with them all the time, who has a concealed weapons license, as I do and so that what makes me a Democrat. I’m for the people, I like to get out and talk to the people, I’m welcoming them homes, it doesn’t bother me anyway at all, I can talk to people sitting on the floor, I can talk with my dog sitting in front of me, I can talk with my cat playing the piano, and people of all kinds have been invited into my home. To me that’s where democrat is, you are for the people, and I’ve demonstrated that with parties I’ve given, the people that come through my doors, that I don’t even know. People came to my house last night, that I didn’t even have a clue who they were, and they were like “oh Jane it was nice meeting you” and it’s just been an amazing experience doing this. That’s what makes me a democrat, I am for the people.
Bob Price: Mike you talk about being a liberal Republican, and what does that mean to you on the sense of political issues to be liberal sided on the Republican party?
Mike Meadors: Well Jane and I have known each other for 35 years, and I’m a Republican and she’s a Democrat and we’re just very, just a tiny bit apart on our views on things. I’m a little bit Liberal, she’s a little bit Conservative. She’s a little bit country, I’m a little bit rock and roll. I’m the same way, I think that there has to be some entitlement programs, there are people who are in need and we see it a lot here because this is a poor area. So there has to be some type of help, they couldn’t make it without it. So you have to bare some generosity, and you have to be charitable in some way. Not that it needs to go on for forever, or for your lifetime.
Jane Cross: That’s where the graciousness in my platform comes in. You’re gracious to people, but gracious doesn’t mean you’re going to take care of them for the rest of their life.
Bob Price: Tell us a little bit about GOOOH and the process that they go through in selecting a candidate to get behind.
Jane Cross: Truthfully I don’t even know how I found out about GOOOH. Some time ago, I was thinking how did I find out about that and I think it was a gut thing, I was supposed to find out about it. So I read all about it, and I am sending my 100 dollars, and I thought that’s the way to do it. We need to pick people from the area, or pick people with the same values. You get to interview them, you get to talk to them, and you find out whether if they’re in some ivory tower somewhere. It’s about the grassroots movement, and then the founders Tim Cox, he’s from Liberty and I think that’s just a classic move. He’s for Liberty, I just love that. He said we need to get back to the grassroots of everything and he said don’t you want to be the District 15 Chair, and I went okay and next thing you know I’m calling people, I put an add in, I talked to people on the radio, I got a group together. We met at the Lark Center and you fill out this questionnaire, and it was 100 questions. Oh my gosh, they were the hardest questions I have ever taken in my life, and you know some questions you can’t answer yes or no and they force you to answer yes or no on some of them. It was how you view a term, how you view line item veto, how do you view military spending. Then the next thing you know you have the rounds, and then Chuck, who you interviewed at the Tea Party, and he said you now lets go. They all decided that when Mike and I came, and Chuck didn’t want to do because of Health reasons and he’s too white. You’re too white.
Bob Price: That is the reality of it.
Mike Meadors: There needs to be more women up there, there needs to be more women in congress and the senate. I think women need to be more involved, they have a different perspective than us on issues, and more times than less, they’re right.
Jane Cross: It’s amazing how women don’t usually get caught with there pants down, we might get caught with our dress up, but we can recover faster. We multitask for years, and I call it the Pee Fighter in the sand syndrome. Men get to the point where little boys stand in the sand and see who can pee further and they’re arguing about something, and then next thing you know one is like I can do that, and the other says he can do something else and they totally lose the issue, and they’re just seeing who can pee further in the sand. Women don’t do that, we don’t have time to pee in the sand, we need to get the issues done, we need to do this, because we have to go home, the kids are coming home from the school, we have to have dinner made, and you know I can bring home the bacon fried up in a pan, and then we have to never forget that you’re a man because of the ego thing. So I think that you get this together with a bunch of women, or people who have light minded attitudes and you’re going to have a winning congressional time.
Bob Price: Let’s talk about a couple of conservative issues. You talked about the Second Amendment earlier, you have a concealed carrying permit, and clearly you don’t think that’s part of the militia or to go out and hunt, but for personal protection. Currently the legislation in the congress to bring reciprocity, much like your drivers license, if you go to Maryland, you don’t have to have a Maryland drivers license, they’re trying to do the same thing with concealed gun permits. Would you support something like this?
Jane Cross: Of course I would, and also in DC, they’ve made it illegal to have guns at all. I think that is, I’m thinking that’s one of the rights you have, and why does DC take away their rights to do that. So is that chipping away, at this one piece of real estate at a time, and it’s like I don’t like that either. If it’s going to be for one it has to be for all. Kind of like a musketeer.
Bob Price: Being that you’re from the Rio Grande Valley, and obviously it is a very important issue, and it affects people here on a daily basis. How would you deal with the issue related to 1.) border security, 2.) Reforming the current immigration system, and 3.) What to do with the people that are already in the county, either who are undocumented because of illegal entry or because of visa overstays?
Jane Cross: The students that have been here since they were five and now you know you’re going to pack them up and send them home. I am pretty much a common sense kind of person, military, yes, this is a hot spot, there are guns coming back and fourth. With the fast and furious, we don’t know where those came from. Then with just people coming back from Iraq, they’re already trained in border security, so why don’t you have boots on the ground. I was talking to a person today, while I was getting my nails done, and she is a doctor in Rio Grande city, and she said only the ill come by her in her parking lot every day. They pay coyotes, and then you find a whole trailer load of them dead, because the coyote didn’t take them out of the trailer. That’s crazy, why don’t we have some type of bracero program like they did in the 50’s and 60’s. Give them a work visa, I mean they want to work, and a time to come in, they pay their taxes, they do what they want, and if they want to become citizens, they can do that, but not take such a long time. It’s crazy, you know and theres a lot of people from here that don’t want to work. In one of the Dairy Queens, they’re offering a 300 dollar signing bonus and 12 dollars an hour and they can’t find any body to work. Are you kidding me?
Bob Price: Now someone will say that is part of our education system, that it has gone astray as pretty much the schools have become factories to produce kids that are going to universities and white collar jobs, and we’re not preparing people for the honorable skills, trade skills.
Jane Cross: That’s a big deal for me, I’m a big trade school person. But you had a three part question with that.
Bob Price: The third one was what to do with the people around here.
Jane Cross: What should we do with the people around here? You know, Mike, people here, you need to make sure they can pass the tests to become a citizen, renounce their original homeland flag which would be Mexico and they assimilate which they have probably have been doing already.
Mike Meadors: Yeah most of them have probably have assimilated.
Jane Cross: They have assimilated and I teach at this college, and let me tell you, it’s the people that come from Mexico, that work the hardest, the second and third generation sometimes are just lazy. If I hear the word “chill” one more time, I’m going to just roll over in my grave. I’m chill, that mean’s theyre lazy and don’t want to get off the couch. Give them citizenship, they’re going to be producing, they want to go to college, they want to have a trade, they want to be productive citizens, then they’re being sent back and they don’t know where they’re going to go. Where are they going to go back to? And the border wall…
Mike Meadors: You don’t give them citizenship, that’s not what she means, she means they’re able to go through the process if they’re here working. If they’re here working, and they’re paying taxes, I think that’s somebody who needs to be fast tracked to citizenship. They’re already what we’re looking for, we’re looking for working body, well they’re working so why not do something to make it easier for them. My grandparents came to this county as Irish immigrants, and they came to Ellis Island, and they did the whole thing, and one of the happiest days of my grandfather’s life was when he became a citizen. So, those people should have the same opportunity, but it takes a long time. I’m not sure it should take that long, and people who come into the country and they want to work, let’s make it easy for them to work. Let’s let them go over there and fill out the paper work, let them get the visa in a couple days and let them do the work that they want to do. I understand why people want to come to this country, we all understand that. All of our ancestors were immigrants, unless we aew Native American.
Jane Cross: I’m adopted so...
Bob Price: Well Jane, clearly youre not a Nancy Pelosi type of Democrat, and I think that any person whether they’re conservative, Republican, Democrat will see that you’re coming from conservative values. I would like to talk to you further about this sometime in the future, and I hope we can get together and talk about it.
Jane Cross: As long as it makes sense, it’s common sense, reasonable and responsible and we need to get back to reasonable and responsible because we’ve gone off the charts.
Bob Price: Well thank you for your time, I really appreciate it.