YCT Calls on Hopson to Recuse Himself from Investigation

Press Releases / November 19, 2010

For Immediate Release
November 19, 2010

Contact: Tony McDonald, Senior Vice Chairman
[email protected],(512) 923-6893

Austin – Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) today called on Representative Chuck Hopson to recuse himself from the House General Investigating and Ethics Committee hearing scheduled for Tuesday, November 23rd.

According to reports filed with the Texas Ethics Commission, Hopson accepted a $15,000 campaign contribution from Speaker Joe Straus in February and a $14,500 campaign contribution in September. The February donation came amidst a tough primary campaign in which Hopson, a former Democrat who switched parties in November 2009, was challenged by two conservative opponents in the Republican primary.

“It is reasonable to assume that Mr. Hopson’s impartiality can be called into question given the large campaign donations he has received from the Speaker – a potential witness in the committee’s investigation,” explained Tony McDonald, YCT Senior Vice-Chairman. “In order to protect the integrity of the committee and the public’s confidence in the process, Representative Hopson should recuse himself from Tuesday’s hearing and any other proceedings which involve allegations associated with Speaker Straus and his leadership team.”

The House General Investigating and Ethics Committee, which Hopson chairs, is scheduled to initiate an investigation concerning allegations that Straus’ leadership team has violated state law by threatening reprisals against members of the Legislature who do not vote for Straus to retain his speakership.

Specifically, earlier this month, Representative Bryan Hughes alleged that he was told by a member of Speaker Straus’s Leadership team that Representative Dan Flynn and Representative-Elect Erwin Cain, both of whom have not pledged to Straus, would be drawn out of their districts during the upcoming redistricting process and that Hughes, as long as he remained a supporter of Speaker Straus, had nothing to worry about. In response to the the threat, Representative Hughes came forward with the allegation and withdrew his pledge to reelect Speaker Straus.

Young Conservatives of Texas has promoted conservatism across the Lone Star State for over three decades. YCT issues the most respected ratings of the Texas legislature and is the only conservative group to have done so without interruption over the last 18 legislative sessions. YCT has hundreds of members at chapters at universities across Texas. To learn more about YCT, their legislative ratings, or their endorsements visit www.yct.org.

YCT, which was founded in 1980, issues the most respected ratings of the state legislature and is the only conservative group to have done so without interruption over the last 18 legislative sessions. YCT has chapters at the University of Texas at Austin, Baylor University, Texas State University, Stephen F. Austin State University, and Texas Tech University.