Tribpedia: Texas Democratic Party

Tribpedia

The Texas Democratic Party is the state branch of the Democratic party, generally considered to be center-left on the political spectrum.  It is one of the two major political parties in Texas, the other being the Republican Party of Texas.

The TDP raises money, organizes events, and campaigns for state Democratic candidates.

After many decades in the majority, Democrats have ...

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Slideshow: When Rick Perry was a Democrat

State Rep. Robert Earley (D-Portland) and Rep. Rick Perry on the floor of the House during the 69th Legislative session, May 15, 1985.
State Rep. Robert Earley (D-Portland) and Rep. Rick Perry on the floor of the House during the 69th Legislative session, May 15, 1985.

It may be hard to believe now, but Gov. Rick Perry got his start in politics as a Democrat, representing Haskell in the Texas House from 1985-1991. It's a period likely to be scrutinized by his Republican opponents should he run for president.

State Rep. Sylvester Turner (c) raises questions on SB1811 as colleagues State Rep. Armando Walle (l), D-Houston, State Rep. Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, and State Rep. Mark Strama (r), D-Austin, listen in the evening of May 29, 2011.
State Rep. Sylvester Turner (c) raises questions on SB1811 as colleagues State Rep. Armando Walle (l), D-Houston, State Rep. Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, and State Rep. Mark Strama (r), D-Austin, listen in the evening of May 29, 2011.

Guest Column: Dems Face Hurdles Winning Over Public

Republican skepticism about public education spending joined with the governor’s determination to hold the line on spending, including on public education, is likely to carry the day — whether it takes a few hours or 30 more days.

Calvin Trillin's 1972 Profile of Sissy Farenthold

As a gift to Trib readers this holiday week, we're pleased to reprint Calvin Trillin's New Yorker profile of 1972 Democratic gubernatorial candidate Frances "Sissy" Farenthold — one of a dozen and a half articles and poems that will be published early next year in Trillin on Texas, a new anthology from the University of Texas Press. A staff writer at the magazine since 1963, Trillin has long seen the state as a rich source of material; elsewhere in the anthology are meditations on subjects ranging from Texas barebecue to the fictional film critic Joe Bob Briggs. He also considers Texas to be a part of his ancestral narrative, as several members of his family arrived in the United States by way of Galveston. "Yes, I do have a Texas connection," he writes in the introduction to the anthology, "but, as we'd say in the Midwest, where I grew up, not so's you'd know it."

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of Dec. 20, 2010

Ramshaw on how hard it is to sue over emergency room mistakes, Galbraith on paying for roads in an era of fuel-efficient vehicles, Aguilar on a disagreement about gun regulation, my interview with tort reformer Dick Trabulsi, Grissom on Perry's parsimonious pardoning, Hu and Chang interactively look at House committee chairs, M. Smith on an election challenge and who'll settle it, Ramshaw and Stiles on Dallas County's blue streak and Hamilton on a Valley school district that leads the nation in preparing kids for college: The best of our best from Dec. 20 to 24, 2010.

Inside Intelligence: Changing Parties

For this week's installment of our nonscientific survey of political and policy insiders on issues of the moment, we asked whether more House members will change parties, how switchers should make the change and whether (and which) Republicans will peel off to vote with the Democratic minority during the coming legislative session.

State Representatives Aaron Pena and Allan Ritter announce their switch to the Republican Party in a press conference at Republican Party of Texas headquarters in Austin.
State Representatives Aaron Pena and Allan Ritter announce their switch to the Republican Party in a press conference at Republican Party of Texas headquarters in Austin.

Now They Have to Win as Republicans

Now that state Reps. Allan Ritter of Nederland and Aaron Peña of Edinburg have ditched the Democrats, attention turns to how they'll hold on to their seats. The former is following a time-tested strategy that has worked for others. The latter is challenging political history.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 12/13/10

Ramsey on what a GOP supermajority means, Ramshaw on a crime victim not eligible for crime victims' compensation, M. Smith on grave matters and state regulation, Hamilton on the college pipeline at San Antonio's Jefferson High, Hu on a senator's anticlimactic return, Grissom on the coming closure of juvenile lockups, Aguilar on the return of residents to their drug-war-torn Mexican town, Galbraith on next session's energy agenda, Philpott on the legal fight over federal health care reform and Stiles on the travel expenses of House members: The best of our best from Dec. 13 to 17, 2010.

State Rep. Aaron Pena, R-Edinburg, at the Texas Republican Party headquarters Dec. 14, after announcing he switched parties.
State Rep. Aaron Pena, R-Edinburg, at the Texas Republican Party headquarters Dec. 14, after announcing he switched parties.

Olbermann on the New Texas House Supermajority

The new GOP supermajority in the Texas House made MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann tonight. The host joked that Democrats "are now as relevant as the mythical chupacabra." 

Why You Should Invest in Texas Democrats

If we ever hope to see the change we desire, we have to continue to support our candidates — even after a terrible loss. The alternative is to simply give up, and just as that was not acceptable for Republicans when they found themselves on the losing side, it’s not acceptable for us.

State Sen. Pete Gallego
State Sen. Pete Gallego

Pete Gallego: The TT Interview

The 10-term Democratic state representative from Alpine on what he thinks of Tuesday's newly minted Republicans, the perils of party switching, the potential death of the middle and what the 49-member minority does now.

State Rep. Aaron Pena, R-Edinburg, at the Texas Republican Party headquarters Dec. 14, after announcing he switched parties.
State Rep. Aaron Pena, R-Edinburg, at the Texas Republican Party headquarters Dec. 14, after announcing he switched parties.

Ritter and Peña Leave Democrats, Join Republicans

Surrounded by statewide elected officials and a pack of fellow lawmakers, Democrats Aaron Peña of Edinburg and Allan Ritter of Nederland defected to the Republican Party this afternoon.

State Rep. Allan Ritter
State Rep. Allan Ritter

What a Supermajority Means in the Texas House

When state Rep. Allan Ritter, D-Nederland, switches parties today, he'll give the Republicans the votes to do anything they want. With a two-thirds majority, the GOP will be able to suspend the rules that govern House business and will have the numbers to keep working even if the Democrats take a walk. On a practical level, Ritter's switch gives Republicans an even bigger buffer on votes that just require a majority of the 150-member House. "It means we can lose 24 votes and still win," says state Rep. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, the chairman of the House Republican Caucus.

What Do Texas Democrats Do Now — and Who'll Lead Them?

Six weeks after the drubbing their party took at the hands of voters, surviving Texas House Democrats find themselves at a crossroads — on style and substance, politics and policy. With massive budget cuts looming, will they effectively sit out the session and force Republicans in the majority to have all the blood on their hands? Will they participate just enough to soften the blow in the areas they care about the most: education and health care? Can they hold together a solid 51-vote bloc on key legislation? Where exactly should they go from here? And who will lead them?

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 11/1/10

Our wall-to-wall Election Day coverage — complete results up and down the ballot and county by county, the all-hands-on-deck Trib team on the Republican tsunami, my conversation with George W. Bush's media adviser and Rick Perry's pollster about what happened on Tuesday, Stiles and Ramsey on what 194 candidates spent per vote this election cycle, Hu on how the GOP rout will affect the substance of the next legislative session, Hamilton on the Texas Democratic Trust's unhappy end, Ramshaw and Stiles profile the new arrivals at the Capitol in January, M. Smith on what's next for Chet Edwards and Ramsey and me on six matters of politics and policy we're thinking about going forward — plus Thevenot and Butrymowicz on a possible solution to the high school dropout problem: The best of our best from Nov. 1 to 5, 2010.