Following his election to the Texas House of Representatives in 2002, Patrick Rose charted a course between the new majority Republicans, who successfully passed a range of conservative legislation and balanced the state budget with billions of dollars of cuts in social spending, and the increasingly powerless liberal Democratic caucus. While he has backed traditional Democratic positions on education and many budget items, Rose also voted for a Republican backed tort reform bill that set limits on court settlements. The consensus view was that Rose walked a fine line in a swing district that was tilted slightly towards conservatives. Even as a freshman representative from a minority party, though, Rose was well thought of by most members and was named Rookie of the Year in the legislature by Texas Monthly Magazine. He is being challenged in the 2004 election by a young ally of Rick Green.
Rose joined most of his House Democratic colleagues in protesting and successfully blocking a mid-term Republican congressional redistricting plan by leaving the state for Ardmore, Oklahoma. Governor Perry then called three special sessions, which spurred the Senate Democrats to leave the state for New Mexico. Once their boycott was broken, though, a redistricting plan was passed that may lead to a seven seat Republican gain in the 2004 elections.
Meanwhile, Travis County continues its investigation into millions of dollars of corporate cash donations to Republican legislative candidates in 2002. Political action committees associated with House Majority Leader Tom DeLay are at the center of the investigation.
The investigation of Rick Green was dropped soon after the 2002 election. He’s back to practicing law, speaking on behalf of Wallbuilders, a conservative Christian organization, and, in his own words, “travelling the nation with my family, speaking, doing lectures on American history, coaching candidates, and training young people through the Patriot Academy. My website at www.rickgreen.com isn’t entirely up to date, but it gives a pretty good picture.”