The recording of a conversation between two top Republican state lawmakers and a conservative activist released Tuesday exposed legislators’ intentional political targeting of cities and counties — and their plans to make the 2021 legislative session even more painful for local governments.
“Any mayor, county judge that was dumb ass enough to come meet with me, I told them with great clarity, my goal is for this to be the worst session in the history of the legislature for cities and counties,” Texas House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, said in the recording.
“I hope the next session is even worse,” Republican state Rep. Dustin Burrows of Lubbock replied.
Bonnen then said he was “all in for that.”…
About 84% of Texans live in urban areas. But as the state’s cities — and even some suburbs — have become more Democratic, officials within the Republican-controlled state government have often sparred with local leaders on everything from homelessness to immigration and ride-sharing regulation.
“Where do we have all our problems in America?” Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick asked in a televised interview in 2017. “In our cities — that are mostly controlled by Democrat mayors and Democrat city councilmen and women. That’s where you see liberal policies. That’s where you see high taxes. That’s where you see street crime.”