The 2014 Texas Republican Party convention is in the books. The party’s new platform has some political scientists concerned that establishment members of the party won’t stand with a more conservative base.
The new platform includes an endorsement of ‘reparative therapy’ for gays and a hard line on immigration. SMU political analyst Cal Jillson says it looks like the party has turned back the clock on policy.
“Two years ago they talked about a guest worker program. That’s out now. They talk about strict border controls and fines now for those who employ illegal aliens,” Jillson told KTRH News.
And as far as their stance on therapy for gays, Jillson says the extreme right wing of the party is not in step with the rest of the country.
“Texas Republicans are standing in the path of normalization of gay marriage in American politics,” Jillson explained.
The extreme right base may be happy with the party platform, but Jillson told KTRH those Republicans that fund campaigns might not be.
“Business friendly Republicans are concerned that moderates will see the platform as too far right,” Jillson stated. They are concerned it will alienate moderates. That remains to be seen, but it is a danger.”
But Jillson says one thing is clear right now. The Tea Party may be struggling in other states, but not in Texas.
“The Tea Party has had their way. They’ve made a very conservative platform,” Jillson said.
Jillson says he expects the Republican nominee for Governor, Attorney General Greg Abbott, to move towards the middle within the next couple of weeks.
One more note from Fort Worth. Senator Ted Cruz ran away with the Presidential straw poll, getting over 40% of the vote.