Why don’t Dallas voters vote their pocketbooks?

margarethunthillbridgeDallas voters played a key role in sending Ted Cruz, the Tea Party darling, to the U.S. Senate. And no one would call Republicans Jeb Hensarling and Pete Sessions, who represent the northern half of the city in the U.S House, tax and spend liberals.

So why, when it comes to city politics, does none of that matter?

Last week’s vote to continue work on the Bridge to Our Pockets, given how Dallas residents vote in U.S. and state races, was baffling. No one on the council who voted for the bridge – many of whom regularly rail about waste in city government – seemed the least bit concerned that they were bucking a trend. And, in one regard, they weren’t. It’s as if Dallas voters have two standards: One for city elections and one for everything else. The more I watch it, the less I understand it.

Why do the voters who helped elect Cruz, who is willing to shut down the federal government in the name of what he calls fiscal conservatism, let their council member get away with the budget foolishness that has been the hallmark of city government for the past five years? It’s not like the bridge is the only silly thing that has gone on downtown. Why isn’t it time to call them on this?

By |2013-01-28T09:43:22-05:00January 28th, 2013|City Hall, News, Politics|3 Comments

About the Author:

Jeff Siegel
JEFF SIEGEL writes about neighborhood issues. He also blogs about wine. Email him at jsiegel@advocatemag.com or follow twitter.com/wine_curmudgeon.         


  1. CAtransplant January 29, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    I love the bridge! It has made my commute from Oak Cliff into downtown far easier. Plus, it is bringing new life to the south side of the river. In my opinion, they should be spending millions to further develop the south side of town.

  2. joelogs January 28, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    I think the author may be a bit confused about how Dallas votes. Dallas voters voted overwhelmingly Democratic. Dallas *Republicans* may have played a role in sending Cruz to Washington in the primaries, but it certainly wasn’t Dallas voters who ultimately sent him there.

  3. Downtownworker January 28, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    Because even Republicans go cookoo for earmarks (and just to clarify, our city council is not primarily Republican). Remember the original Bridge to Nowhere in Alaska? Or how Paul Ryan made two requests for Stimulus funds? The second Calatrava bridge is mostly paid for by a pre-recession earmark that was secured by former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and Dallas Rep. Pete Sessions –  both Republicans. The only people who voted against spending more money on the Calatrava bridge were Hunt and Grigg’s, hardly members of the Tea Party.

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