Texas Politicians Focused On Religion, Not Gun Rights, After Shooting

This week in Texas politics with the Texas Tribune.

By Rhonda FanningNovember 10, 2017 12:57 pm,

Time for the week that was in Texas politics with Emily Ramshaw, editor-in-chief of the Texas Tribune.

With the deadliest shooting in state history, it’s been a busy and somber week for news from Texas.

“Every time there is a shooting of this nature, politicians really double down. They get entrenched on their sides of the gun rights debate. Texas politicians were no different in this case, though they spent the early part of the week really headed out to this community, holding a lot of vigils, really praying with people in these communities. You know, because it happened in a church, and this is such a sort of church-friendly state, I think you saw a real focus on religion and empowerment versus the gun rights debate.”

Other stories were overshadowed by the events in Sutherland Springs, like a Texas House subcommittee hearing in Corpus Christi about Harvey recovery.

“Local officials are predictably angry and their anger goes both places,” Ramshaw says. “It goes both to the feds and to the state. So they’re angry with the feds because they feel like FEMA is not reacting quickly enough, that there are still a lot of people heading into winter who are still living, you know, in tents or in shelters. They’re also angry at the state because they think the state has sort of played favorites.”

Hurricane victims may be frustrated with Governor Greg Abbott, though that’s unlikely to affect his reelection bid.

“As the months pass, people start to get really disgruntled,” she says. “Obviously he does not have a serious challenger, Governor Abbott doesn’t. So I don’t think we’re looking at a troubled race for governor but I do think it’s not good for your reputation if people feel like you can’t deliver on your promises.”

Texas Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn have both endorsed Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, who is now facing allegations that he pursued underaged girls years ago.

“It’s never great to have endorsed somebody who is facing this kind of story in the news,” she says. Sen. Cruz says he’ll wait to see what facts come out.