As we approach the general election, I am struck by what a critical role this process plays in our efforts to restore the right of fit parents in Texas and this country. For many years we have known the importance of educating legislators and statewide elected officials as they sought public office. That, of course, is when they are most open to hearing about issues that are important to voters.
More than one candidate has dismissed home schoolers only to learn what a force we are in the election process. More than a few have decided it best to embrace the right of parents to direct the care, control, and upbringing of their children, including the choice of home education, if for no other reason, to avoid the opposition of these parental rights activists to their election.
It is becoming clear that it is just as important, if not more so, in the election of judges at every level. While Texans jealously guard that right to elect judges rather than have them appointed, most voters vote for judges with little, if any, idea of whom they are supporting. Consequently, these judges often serve for what amounts to a life term.
Yesterday I read an editorial by the San Antonio Express News regarding a judge in South Texas whom I wrote about back in February that was suspended because of a video posted by his daughter showing his abuse of her as a child some years earlier. The Texas Commission on Judicial Conduct acknowledged that the judge violated the Texas Constitution and the Texas Judicial Code of Conduct, yet only issued a public warning, which allows him to go back to the bench and serve out the two years left on his term.
While I rarely agree with the editorial page of that newspaper, I heartily support their conclusion that the commission will pretty much let a judge get away with anything. The paper notes that between 2008 and 2011 there were over 4,000 complaints filed against Texas judges and only 73 public sanctions were issued. The judge’s daughter has issued a statement that she is furious that the state has allowed her father to continue to make decisions about who is and is not fit to be a parent.
The paper hopes that the voters of Aransas County have higher standards, which brings me to my point. We cannot depend on the Texas Commission on Judicial Conduct to protect families from biased, unfair, and unethical judges. There are a number of judges that THSC PAC will be seeking to defeat in the upcoming election because they have demonstrated bias against parental rights, lack of judicial demeanor, and other flaws. Likewise, we will be supporting the election of fair and impartial judges who have demonstrated that they understand and support the fundamental constitutional right of fit parents to direct the care, control, and upbringing of their children.
Years ago the business community in Texas responded to the bias in the Texas Judiciary by forming groups calling for lawsuit reform. These groups began to systematically work to replace bad judges with judges whom they believed were fair and impartial. The result has been a much fairer environment to businesses, which has been a key in the economic growth in our state.
THSC PAC is seeking to do the same thing in regard to parental rights and family law issues. We are the only statewide PAC involved in the endorsement of Texas judges at every level. Your financial and political support will enable us to educate judicial candidates regarding parental rights and work for the election of such judges, while at the same time work to remove from office biased and unfair judges, including those who refuse, by word or action, to acknowledge the constitutional right of parents. It is critical that we be active in the political process and make sure that we support candidates at the local, county, state, and national level who understand and support those rights.