Liberal Republicans and the Democrats have once again teamed up in an effort to erode the First Amendment liberties of Texans. Led by State Rep. Byron Cook of Corsicana, the anti-citizen crowd is working to implement one of Hillary Clinton’s central campaign tenets.

Like Clinton, Cook and his cronies want to silence criticism. A majority of conservatives, and a majority of the Republican Party, strongly disagrees with them. In fact, more than half of the House Republicans voted against Cook’s effort to repeal the First Amendment when he hijacked Gov. Greg Abbott’s ethics reform legislation, Senate Bill 19.

Byron Cook

Byron Cook

For whatever reason, Cook has personalized his assault on the First Amendment by attacking me and Empower Texans. That’s cool; we are happy to keep shining a light on his underhanded efforts to protect labor unions and erode conservative policy positions.

But I’ll make a deal with Byron Cook:

  • If his hijacked version of SB19 were to be enacted and survive legal review, I’ll pack up and leave my beloved Lone Star State.
  • On the other hand, if his effort – which has already been rejected by a majority of his GOP colleagues – does not make it into law, he would agree to endorse his Republican primary challenger, Thomas McNutt.

So how about it Byron, have we got a deal? You willing to man up?

I suspect he won’t. He knows his unconstitutional assault on basic liberties will never be the law of the land. And like all bullies, Cook is afraid of being exposed. Too bad for him, because we’ll keep shining a First Amendment-powered light on him.

UPDATE (May 31, 2015): Cook never answered my challenge, so I guess I’m not leaving. And since his unconstitutional assault on the First Amendment was stopped cold, Texans’ First Amendment liberties are safe for another 18 months.

Michael Quinn Sullivan

Michael Quinn Sullivan is the publisher of Texas Scorecard. He is a native Texan, a graduate of Texas A&M, and an Eagle Scout. Previously, he has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine contributor, Capitol Hill staffer, and think tank vice president. Michael and his wife have three adult children, a son-in-law, and a dog. Michael is the author of three books, including "Reflections on Life and Liberty."