By Alex Gonzalez
On Friday, Sen. John Cornyn officially launching his re-election campaign by speaking to a crowd of supporters in Austin about the need for Republicans to behave like “responsible adults” and to be a “big tent” Party. This statement was evidently meant as rebuttal for some Tea Party conservative groups that have been disappointed about Sen. Cornyn’s decision not to back Sen. Ted Cruz in his recent campaign to “defund” Obamacare in the Senate and against groups that do not compromise.
However, for a United States senator who is preaching the “adult” doctrine, there is ample evidence showing that Sen. Cornyn has not been acting as “responsible adult,” nor as a conservative in the US. Senate. In fact, Sen. Cornyn’s voting record shows that he has behaved more like an adolescent who tells voters one thing, yet he has voted the opposite; he has voted one way and the turns around and says something different to voters on privacy rights, immigration, protection for women, taxes, and the National Debt.
For example, when Sen. Cruz was advocating to defund Obamacare, even if it meant the temporary shutdown of Congress, Sen. Cornyn said “I don’t think very many think that a government shutdown is in the best interests of the economy and will actually accomplish the goal that’s set out.” But sixteen days later Cornyn, who repeatedly voiced reservations about Cruz’s defunding strategy, voted against the deal in the Senate to re-open the government because of reservations Sen. Cornyn had on the debt ceiling, although he had voted to raise the debt ceiling eight times in the past. In other words, he was against shutting down the government, and then he voted for keeping government shutdown. And this is how a responsible adult conservative should behave?
Obamacare and the Debt Ceiling are not the first issue Sen. Cornyn has failed to act like a responsible adult. Immigration is the one issue where Sen. Cornyn loves to say one thing and vote the opposite. For example, Sen. Cornyn voted no on The Bipartisan Senate bill, or S. 744, even though he voted yes for Cloture on the floor and Nay in the final vote in Senate Judiciary Committee. Moreover, on the floor he introduce a “sweeping amendment” that replaced an entire section devoted to border security and tweaked the national security and criminal justice titles. He argued that if his amendment passed, he would consider voting for the bill. But everyone in the U.S. Senate knew that this was “Cornyn’s old dirty trick” often used by him, in which he pretends to be sincere about the need for reform.
But this is what he does, or what some have dubbed Cornyn’s “same old dirty trick.” In 2006, Sen Cornyn also voted again the Republican Senate bill in 2006 promoted by President Bush, and in 2010 he voted against the DREAM Act . So for someone who is preaching “big tent” Party mantra where, as he argued, Republicans need to compromise where they agree on 80% as Reagan did and start working together, Sen. Cornyn simply plays lip service to this mantra. Sen. Cornyn is not in the business of fixing immigration as much as he is in keeping this issue alive to use it in campaigns ads. Is this how responsible adults behave?
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is another vote where Cornyn voted one way but he told the voters he supported the bill. For instance, the VAWA bill was 78-22. 24 republicans voted in favor; all Republican women vote for it: Ayotte (R-NH), Collins (R-ME), Murkowski (R-AK), The Senator Voted Nay because “he had done everything in his power to see the bill pass. Last week, he voted for a revised version of the reauthorization bill that would have altered the terms as they relate to tribal courts.” Thus, Sen. Cornyn voted against the interests of 160 million of American women just because in “tribal courts” the language was different. More ironically is the fact that as soon as the bill was signed, he was among those celebrating President Barack Obama signing the Violence Against Women Act into law. Is this how a “responsible adult” behaves?
When it comes to freedom and privacy, Sen. Cornyn comes to Texas and tells voters he is for the protection of freedoms and your right to privacy. However, he has voted twice on FISA and on giving more power to the NSA to spy on Americans. For example, in 2007, Senator Cornyn voted for the FISA Amendments Act, which granted immunity to U.S. telecommunication companies for giving information about their customers to the government without a warrant. On December 28, 2012, Sen. Cornyn voted to re-authorized FAA Sunsets Extension Act of 2012, which will authorize warrantless surveillance of Americans until 2017. This is one of the key provisions that allowed the NSA to conduct its warrantless blanket surveillance of American citizens. In addition, Sen. Cornyn voted for the Protect Intellectual Privacy Act in committee (PIPA or SOPA in the House) but later voted no on the Floor when conservatives raised concerns about privacy.
And there are many more reasons why Tea Party groups like, FreedomWorks Keeps pummeling Sen. Cornyn as a big-government Republican.
Here the top ten reason why Corny is NOT a responsible adult:
1. Cornyn Voted to Let Harry Reid Fund ObamaCare
2. Cornyn Voted for the Wall Street Bailout (T.A.R.P.)
3. Cornyn Voted for Medicare Part D
4. Cornyn Voted to Increase the Federal Minimum Wage
5. Cornyn Voted for the Fiscal Cliff Tax Hike
6. Cornyn Voted against Fiscally Conservative Budgets
7. Cornyn Supported Intrusive Internet Regulations (PIPA)
8. Cornyn Voted to Allow Warrantless Data Collection on American Citizens
(On December 28, 2012, Sen. Cornyn voted to re-authorized FAA
Sunsets Extension Act of 2012, which will authorize warrantless surveillance of Americans until 2017
9. Cornyn Has Voted to Raise the Debt Ceiling Eight Times
10. Cornyn Voted to Reauthorize the Patriot Act
So Sen. Cornyn is not in a position to be telling Tea Party groups in Texas, who want a limited government, and a conservative to tackle the national debt and constitutional privacy, to behave like “responsible adults.” It is due to the votes of Senators like Cornyn that has expanded the federal government to an enormous size in the last 11 years.
Too, Sen. Cornyn is in not in a position to be telling Latino voters in Texas–who may be angry with Cornyn for voting no on Immigration— to behave like “responsible adults” since he has been playing games with immigration for the last 7 years.
Sen, Cornyn is in no position to be telling women voters in Texas to act like responsible adults after he voted no on the Violence against Women Act over “tribal” language. Indeed, all these groups should be demanding that Sen. Cornyn behave like a conservative responsible adult and stop flip-flopping so much on issues.
Texas voters have the right to be angry and demand accountability from Senator Cornyn who often changes his views.
Therefore, anyone who listened to Sen. Cornyn’s speech where he called for them to behave as a responsible adult should be offended considering the irresponsible flip-flopping behavior from Republicans in Congress to fix the National Debt, immigration and borders security, Taxes, and Entitlements that have all caused a vacuum of adult behavior in the Congress. As a result of this, federal government keeps growing, and voters are angry because of that.
So for Sen. Corny to say that anyone who opposes him is not behaving like an “adult” shows that he is not serious about fixing the D.C. chronic policies. He instead demeans others, like Sen. Cruz who stands on principles. For the last 11 years Sen. Cornyn has been exhibiting a double-talk adolescent behavior.
Perhaps it is time that Sen. Cornyn take his own advice and act as a responsible adult and be consistent on his voting record.
Alex Gonzalez is a political Analyst and Political Director for Latinos Ready To Vote! He received a Bachelors Degree and a Masters’ Degree, with emphasis in American politics, from San Francisco State University.