The race for Land Commissioner continues to heat up ahead of the March primary election. In an interview with the editorial board of the Bryan-College Station Eagle, Land Commissioner George P. Bush called for a special session of the legislature to tap the rainy day fund for Hurricane Harvey-related expenses. 24 hours later, Bush has flipped 180 degrees on his position.
In the interview, which was published Sunday, Bush called on Gov. Greg Abbott to call a special session in order to spend money from the rainy day fund, stating, “The Legislature needs to take a deep look at the Rainy Day Fund. We need a special session, and the governor needs to call it.”
This definitive statement was a bold contradiction with Abbott’s assertion following the storm that a special session would not be necessary this year to address Harvey-related spending and that the state had enough resources to “address the needs between now and the next session.”
24 hours later, Bush has flip-flopped on the issue, telling the Texas Tribune today, “I clearly misspoke. I agree that calling a special session is not necessary. I will continue to work under Gov. Abbott’s leadership as we help Texans through the hurricane recovery process.”
Jerry Patterson, one of Bush’s primary opponents who held the office from 2003-2015, was quick to criticize his about-face on the issue, commenting, “We don’t need a special session, we need George P. Bush to do his job.” Patterson has made Bush’s handling of Hurricane Harvey relief a key issue in his campaign.
Bush faces three primary opponents in his campaign for re-election: Davey Edwards, Rick Range, and Jerry Patterson.
Bush has recently received criticism from conservatives after spending the weekend campaigning with liberal Republican State Rep. Jason Villalba in Dallas. His inconsistency on the necessity for a special session may give voters evaluating his leadership another reason for pause.

Brandon Waltens

Brandon serves as the Senior Editor for Texas Scorecard. After managing successful campaigns for top conservative legislators and serving as a Chief of Staff in the Texas Capitol, Brandon moved outside the dome in order to shine a spotlight on conservative victories and establishment corruption in Austin. @bwaltens