Governor Perry made clear in his tele-townhall call Tuesday night that the state government has plenty of room for cuts.
This is in sharp contrast to Speaker Joe Straus and his House moderate cohorts. They have been campaigning on the premise that Texas government is efficient, so that any funds we may need have to come from new revenues.
Team Straus’s task is tall, since they’re tiptoeing around the very concept of reform in the midst of a strong national mood of reform, fueled by ObamaCare, the EPA, and the Obama Administration generally.
Gov. Perry is tapping directly into the national pro-reform mood that has government unions on the ropes in the Midwest, bold school choice reform loaded into Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal’s missile bay, and a drug test requirement for entitlement dollars circulating the nation in state governments.
In addition, Gov. Perry is on a mission to take state control back for state functions. Currently the federal government buys state control with various funding given with strings attached. In most cases money is provided up front but the state commits to unsustainable funding later on, plus the feds include "strings", which usually amount to liberal social policy.
Gov. Perry has shown he has string-cutting fortitude with the Women's Health Program. Speaker Straus has criticized him for missing out on the federal money.
The tele-townhall event was hosted by Empower Texans and focused on the Women's Health Program. Federal funding for the WHS program was recently cut by the Obama Administration and Gov. Perry has promised to fund it with no new revenues.