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tv   Book Discussion on Red State  CSPAN  August 5, 2015 6:53pm-7:06pm EDT

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the party of the south and it really came out of the outgrowth of the civil war where the republican party was regarded as the party of the north, the party of the yankees, the party of the blacks. during the period of the 19th century, the base of the republican party up until the 1920's was black voters. as more and more black voters were excluded, so too republican votes went down. by the beginning of the 20th century, the democratic party was totally dominant. within the democratic party there were conservatives and as the 20th century went on, a number of liberal democrats. the contest became between conservatives and liberals within the democratic primary. up until about 1960, almost every elected official in the state was a democrat, and most of the elections that shows officials for public office took place in the democratic primary. you had a pattern up until about 1960 where more people were
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voting in the democratic primary in the spring then in november because there was really no contest in the november election. starting in 1960, texas has gone through three stages of transformation that have changed the dynamics of texas politics. the first one from about 1960 to 1978 that first phase of change was one where the republican party became competitive at the top of the ticket. we had a period of competitive races for the presidency, for the united states senate and some of the governor's races. below that, everything was democratic. in the second phase, starting in 1978 through 1996, is really what i call an interlude of two-party competition. from 1978 through 1996, the government changed every four years from democrat, republican.
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the two senators during most of that time comprised of one republican and one democrat. other races, republicans were becoming more competitive. the republican party during that period of time the 1970's and 1980's, was reliant heavily on immigration of people to the state. the early growth of the republicans were from people moving here, much like myself. there was a later movement in the 1980's and 1990's when people were shifting from being democrat to republican. much of the growth of the party was from younger voters, first registrants, and people who were immigrants moving here. there was that kind of a change that was occurring in the state during the 1970's and early 1980's. there was a great migration of almost 2 million new residents
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net migration of 2 million from other states to texas. the third phase starts in 1996 and since then it is an era of republican dominance. ever since 1996, every statewide office has been run by the republicans. texas is very important in the republican party because it provides the largest number of republican congressman. there are 25 republican house members and the two senators are republicans. no other state has as many republican congressman. in terms of presidential politics, ever since 1980 the state has voted for the republican presidential candidate, and that is the base of if the republicans are ever going to win the white house again, they need to rely on the votes from texas. without texas there is no way they can get a majority in the electoral college. people look at states like virginia and see it change, its dynamics becoming purple or even shading blue when it had been
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read and republican before, and ask whether or not that will happen in texas. i do not think it is for a long time. there's a lot of projections out there by a number of people that texas is not going to become much more competitive because of the increase in a number of hispanics in our population. the demographic projections are that we will become majority hispanic sometime in the next 10 to 15 years. then the projection these people are making is, that will lead to a democratic texas. i think they are off base for a number of reasons. republicans do very well in this state among hispanic voters. we have been averaging at the statewide level about 40% of the hispanic vote. in the last election, greg abbott, candidate for governor got 44% running against wendy davis. the senator, john cornyn, got
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the majority of the hispanic vote. the trends are not as overwhelming as people project. the second thing is to look to the future, 10 to 15 years from now, and prognosticate on what is going to happen is very iffy and uncertain. i'll give you three reasons why i think trying to portray the state becoming democratic because of the increase in hispanics is wrong. first one is assimilation intermarriage, and suburbanization. all those three factors make it questionable about how hispanics are going to vote in the future. intermarriage is the first link. the two candidates -- her name was better pure. both of them are hispanics.
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what are their children and grandchildren going to identify as? are they going to marry anglos? are they going to mother other -- mary other hispanics? nobody knows. not only assimilation and intermarriage, but the third thing would be suburbanization. more and more hispanics moved to the suburbs, they're moving into areas where the republican party is dominant. if every decision about your county commission and your local officials is made in the republican primary and all the local officials are republican and all your neighbors are republican or most of them, are you still going to be a democrat or are you going to go in the republican primary and vote for republican candidates? north of us in williamson county, the state representative is larry gonzalez, a republican hispanic. the county commissioner is willy penn you -- pena.
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as hispanics move more to the suburbs, i think they will become even more inclined to vote republican. there has been some writers recently who have tried to describe the changes inquick some writers recently have tried to describe the changes in texas by saying that the suburbs have become more democratic, and that the change happening not only in the cities, but in the suburbs, will lead texas to become more blue, more competitive. i don't think that's going to happen, and the results of the recent elections don't show that. there are 29 counties that are suburban counties around dallas, fort worth, san antonio, and austin. in those 29 counties, greg abbott won everyone one of them. in those 29 counties, everyone is a republican.
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in those areas, the republican party is so dominant that i think any -- it would take a long time before the democrats are able to become a competitive force. what the democrats really need to do -- and i don't want to beginning them advice, but i think what they are missing is a name for structure which is to say grassroots organization -- infrastructure, which is to say a grassroots organization, and an ideology. if they come across like wendy davis, they are never going to fit in the majority of conservative texas. unless they are willing to modify their philosophical and ideological position, and unless they are willing to recruit a grassroots base and a farm team i don't think they are ever going to become competitive. i think the lessons that can be learned from texas in terms of how the republican party has her's wanted is number one -- has responded, is number one,
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being a party -- under the state chairman, the party has done an ongoing effort to reach out around the year, not just at election time, to the growing asian-american community, to the african-american community, and to the hispanic community. that has resulted in a situation where more and more candidates are being recruited than are getting a leg did. we -- getting elected. we now have five hispanic state representatives and one hispanic congressman. we have one african-american congressmen and to african-american state representatives. we had three, but she decided to run for higher office and bowed out of that race. and we have one asian-american state representative. one of the things this party has done in texas is try to reach out to all of the community, not
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in any way denigrating its conservatism but being receptive to new individuals and incorporating them into the party. i think that is probably the main lesson that can be learned. the second thing is down ballot candidates getting support they may be otherwise would that get. we are one of only 12 states that allow straight ticket voting. when you go in, you can make one mark, one punch, and allow -- and go all in democratic or all republican. there is not the drop-off that occurs with lower-level offices where people just don't vote. that has really helped our candidates greatly. red state is really an analysis
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of the transformation of texas politics and how it came about and what the future holds. and my projections in the last chapter really are that for the for seeable future, texas is going to remain a republican state. >> the c-span city store continues with a conversation about stonewall jackson. host: who was stonewall jackson? guest: he was a confederate general. he fought during the first two years of the civil war from roughly 1861-1863. he was very influential in the early -- in the first two years of the war, but particularly in the eastern theater, in virginia. host: how did he get the name stonewall? guest: if you go back to the
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battle of manasses, the battle of bull run, the first big battle of the civil war, jackson was an unknown brigadier general at that time, and he turned out to be an unlikely hero of that war. what happened, briefly, in the battle was that he had moved to a strategic point in the middle of the confederate battle and he had held it against his union assault. there was a moment when a south carolinians general who was trying to rally his man looked up 500 yards to the top of the hill where jackson was standing against the union assault and said look, there is jackson's dancing like a stone that jackson -- jackson standing like a stone wall. i am sure he was using

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