Closed Session Dominates so-called “Public Hearing” on Straus Supporter, Rep. Larry Phillips Named As Alleged House Member, Source of “Threat” of Punishment For Speaker Joe Straus Opposers

Nov 23, 2010
Topic: Update

Update!!:  12;48 p.m.  House committee, chaired by Rep. Chuck Hopson (appointed by Joe Straus) emerges from closed/executive session, over three (3) hours later. 

Rep. Bryan Hughes speaks first, asks to be placed under oath and such request is granted.  Rep. Hughes repeats the statements made in his letter early this month, stands by his recalling of what he heard Rep. Larry Phillips say (see Hughes letter below). Rep. Phillips said that Rep. Hughes statements about redistricting were false. Rep. Phillips says that no such redistricting maps are being drawn. 

Rep. Hughes says that Rep. Chisum and Rep.-elect Landtroop were also mentioned by Rep. Phillips regarding redistricting issues.  According to Rep. Hughes, he was told by Rep. Phillips that Rep. Landtroop could be protected.

Following the ten (10) minutes of a “public hearing”, Rep. Hughes tooks questions from the media.  Rep. Phillips immediately left the hearing room.

Chairman Hopson (appointed by Speaker Joe Straus) concludes not enough information at this time to make any decision about misconduct.  Hearing adjourns.

Rep. Hughes stated to the press that he called Rep. Phillips before he sent out his letter with such allegations in question.  See Hughes letter below.

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We’re at the Texas Capitol, at the House General Investigating and Ethics Committee hearing, regarding allegation made related to Speaker Joe Straus support.  The committee came to order briefly.  Present were: Chairman Chuck Hopson (appointed by Straus), Rep. Creighton, Rep. Hunter. 

Rep. Larry Phillips was named as the Texas House member that Rep. Bryan Hughes said called him and discussed how a redistricting map was already being drawn to get rid of Republicans Rep. Erwin Cain and Rep. Dan Flynn as punishment for not supporting Joe Straus for Speaker, but that Rep. Hughes would be safe as long as he supported Straus.

See the letter here with Hughes’ detailed description of the call between he and Rep. Larry Phillips.  BryanHughesWithdrawsSupportFor Straus

Chairman Hopson (apppointed by Straus) made some important annoucements:

1. Rep. Larry Phillips has recused himself from the committee hearing, as he is a member of this committee that is conducting the investigation.

2. The hearing would limited to the one purpose, the allegations made in Rep. Hughes’ letter.  I assume this means the Rep. Hopson has backed off his efforts to investigate people’s free speech activities, who dared give their opinion about the Texas Speaker of the House race.  We’ll see.  Hearing is technically not over yet.

3. The hearing would take place in private, and the public and media would be shut out of the important discussions between Rep. Phillips, Rep. Hughes, and the House committee.

See our letter here, expressing our concerns about Rep. Hopson’s negative statements about speech by private citizens in the Texas Speaker race.  http://txvalues.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/ltr-to-tx-house-of-representatives1.pdf

We are still in the hearing room and we await the return of the committee members and Rep. Hughes from Chairman Hopson’s closed session.

New video opposing Straus has surfaced.  [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBO7lmJmjy4]

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