Late this evening, in a 6-4 vote, I came up short in my attempt to ban the use of state taxpayer dollars to support the construction of a high-speed railway in Texas.
The budget provision I authored, Rider 48, was quite simply about protecting the taxpayers and property owners of Texas. Texas Central Railway has gone to considerable lengths to convince the members of the legislature and the people of Texas that this proposed high-speed railway would be built using only private funds — repeatedly claiming that this project can be accomplished without the use of any state tax dollars. The budget rider I authored was a straightforward attempt to hold TCR to their word…no more, no less.
I realize many of my constituents will be disheartened and disappointed by tonight’s result. However, this outcome says less about a battle lost than it does about our ability to prevail in a greater conflict. When I first came to Austin, I promised the people of my district that I would do everything in my power to stand up for them and fight to preserve their way of life. As long as I have the privilege of serving in the Texas Senate, I intend to continue that fight.