There were harsh words for State Rep. Dan Flynn (R-Canton) and the rest of the House leadership cartel Tuesday night as a University of Texas regent described the lengths to which lawmakers went to silence a whistleblower. Although Flynn had reportedly been given an opportunity to set the date and time of the event, and provide his own perspective, he did not make an appearance at the forum featuring UT Regent Wallace Hall in Canton.
Wallace Hall was appointed to the UT Board of Regents by Gov. Rick Perry in 2011. He quickly became embroiled in controversy when, in his capacity as regent, Hall began investigating instances of financial malfeasance in the law school’s forgivable loan program. He later uncovered rampant political favoritism in admissions.
As a result of his investigations, the House leadership coalition of Democrats and liberal Republicans led by House Speaker Joe Straus mobilized to protect their access to the university’s admissions process. Rep. Flynn and Rep. Carol Alvarado (D-Houston) were appointed by Straus to co-chair an investigative committee, which pursued impeachment of Hall for the crime of asking too many questions of the UT bureaucracy. They ultimately ended up backing down and merely censuring Hall.
“There’s been a constant, reoccurring theme during my tenure as regent that people don’t criticize me for what I’ve found, but for how I conducted myself — that they would have done it differently somehow and gotten to the same place. There’s just no way that could have happened, because all I did was ask questions — and demand good answers,” Hall stated. “The trouble began when I demanded good answers.”
Despite repeated attempts by the Straus coalition to silence him, Hall has been vindicated time and time again. An outside firm, Kroll & Associates, verified the allegations of impropriety to an even worse degree than had originally been thought. Meanwhile, a grand jury under the notoriously liberal Travis County D.A. refused to indict Hall despite Straus’ attempt to orchestrate an indictment.
“The fact that they didn’t indict me….is unbelievable,” Hall said. “When you look at what’s happened down in Houston recently with the group that shot the videos of Planned Parenthood…When you look at the allegations against Governor Perry, when you look at what they did to Tom Delay, the fact that they didn’t indict me means that there must not have been anything…at all. Not a scintilla of wrongdoing found, or they would have indicted me. I expected it.”
Most conservatives understand the dangers that too big of a government can pose to those who simply ask questions or speak out about wrongdoing.
“If people are not held accountable for their actions — certainly our politicians, and government employees – then our government will continue to grow larger and more threatening to the people whom it is supposed to serve. Don’t let Dan Flynn fool you any longer; he doesn’t fool me,” concluded Hall. “Do the people of Texas a favor: Remove him from office so he is unable to do anymore harm, and replace him with another — Bryan Slaton — and give him the opportunity to earn your trust. Your vote matters.”