The Texas Association of Business continued its trend of endorsing establishment candidates today with the announcement of three additional endorsements ahead of the March 6th primary election: State Rep. Dan Flynn (R–Van), Frisco’s Clint Bedsole, and Spring’s James Wilson.
TAB’s endorsement of Flynn is hardly surprising given the organization’s proclivity towards endorsing establishment lawmakers. On the organization’s scorecard, which is based on a collection of farcical “pro-business” votes, Flynn carries a 92% rating. For context, their highest rating was given to State Rep. Oscar Longoria of Mission … a liberal Democrat.
The decision to endorse Bedsole in the open race to succeed State Rep. Pat Fallon (R–Little Elm) in Texas House District 106 is particularly interesting in light of new revelations published by Texas Scorecard yesterday that show Bedsole is in debt to the tune of more than $200,000 after he failed to repay a loan for his custom golf cart business, Epic Carts LLC.
Community National Bank and Trust filed suit against Bedsole for his delinquency in the fall and a court has ruled he must repay the loan, a problem exacerbated by the fact that Bedsole has also loaned $30,000 to his own campaign.
James Wilson, who is challenging State Rep. Valoree Swanson (R–Spring), a member of the Texas Freedom Caucus, is perhaps the most outrageous endorsement from the liberal business group. Wilson, a perennial candidate who has repeatedly failed to garner more than a few percentage points at the polls during his numerous vanity attempts to enter elected office, was forced to file for bankruptcy in 2015 when his own insurance business failed as well.
Just last year, Wilson’s home was foreclosed on after he failed to make payments on the house, and, despite the financial turmoil in his personal and professional life, decided that same year to run for the Texas Legislature.
TAB has been at odds with conservatives for years, but the divide was never more clear than during the last legislative session. While conservatives rallied for tax reform, lessening burdensome regulations on businesses, and fiscal responsibility at the state level, TAB spent the last regular and special session battling against efforts like ending in-state tuition for illegal immigrants and banning sanctuary cities.
Most notably, TAB was seen leading the opposition against the Texas Privacy Act, a bill designed to prevent local governments from forcing businesses to allow men into women’s showers, locker rooms, and restrooms. After the 85th Legislative Session, leaked documents revealed TAB received $130,000 of its $200,000 budget from national LGBT groups.
In the release of their additional endorsements today, TAB has once again shown it can no longer claim to be the voice of business. Rather, it is simply another front group for the establishment.