San Antonio City Councilmember Marc Whyte wrote an article last month in defense of the state’s major preemption legislation (House Bill 2127) and, while reading it, I was reminded of the words of a famous Texan, David Crockett, who said: “Be sure you are right, then go ahead.”
Risking fierce criticism, Councilman Whyte explained the basis of his support, saying:
“This new law will make doing business in Texas simpler and less expensive. It will not strip our ability to do the job San Antonians elected us to do, but rather it will bring clarity to our work by focusing us on city’s problems our residents want my council colleagues and I to work together to solve.”
In other words, it will foster economic growth and focus the city’s attention on core services rather than shiny objects. And that’s something sorely needed in today’s local governance scene.
Over the years, home-rule cities in Texas, which have a tendency to be dominated by the progressive mindset, have gotten away from simply providing the basics and have instead ventured off into all sorts of questionable areas, like climate change, racial equity, preferred pronouns, and transgender-inclusive policing. The radicalization of municipal policy is a major reason why the Texas Legislature has been forced to utilize preemption in ever greater fashion of late.
Now, I imagine Marc Whyte stands alone in the San Antonio City Council. Fighting against big cities for small businesses is often thankless work. Well, it has not gone unnoticed by this Texan. To be sure, he’s no David Crockett, but his piece defending HB 2127 exemplifies that same Texas spirit of doing the right thing for the right reasons.
Councilman Whyte, thank you for going ahead.