Business leader challenges MQ Sullivan to debate immigration policy

In open letter, Houston businessman Norman Adams says enough is enough when it comes to Empower Texans' attacks on Chairman Byron Cook

This story was originally published on the Quorum Report.

A Houston business leader who is a staunch Republican and a chief ally of archconservative Steve Hotze on Thursday said he has had enough of Tim Dunn spokesman Michael Quinn Sullivan’s attacks on Rep. Byron Cook, R-Corsicana.

Norman Adams – known in the Capitol community as a firebrand conservative who supports sensible immigration reform – wrote an open letter to Sullivan in which he pulled no punches while defending Rep. Cook.

The House State Affairs Committee Chairman has been under fire from Sullivan and his Dunn-funded group, Empower Texans, because he supports issuing driver permits to undocumented immigrants. It’s a good public policy, Cook has argued, because those people right now are prevented from purchasing car insurance from reputable companies.

Adams said he wants to debate with Sullivan in an event that would be hosted by Hotze’s group, the Conservative Republicans of Texas.

There was no immediate comment from Sullivan.

“Evidently your staff had nothing better to do on Mother’s Day than to falsely accuse State Representative Byron Cook via your TEXAS SCORECARD by suggesting that Cook is supporting legislation that the majority of Texas Republicans oppose,” Adams wrote to Sullivan. “Nothing could be further from the truth.”

In a blog post titled “Driving Texas Leftward,” Empower Texans said that Cook’s proposal would be expected from a Democrat instead of a Republican.

“The liberal Austin political establishment heaped praise on Cook for his action,” the blog said and pointed to analysis by the publisher of Quorum Report Harvey Kronberg, who said “For him (Cook) to carry a bill to provide driver’s licenses for undocumented workers is particularly courageous, although sensible.”

In his letter, Adams included a statewide poll conducted by Wilson Perkins Allen Opinion Research that showed Cook’s conditional driver permit ideas are supported by 77% of Texas Republicans.

“Mr. Sullivan, you ought to support this legislation, not misrepresent it,” Adams said. “A ‘conditional permit’ is not a driver license. The proposed permit, for example, cannot be used to board an airplane or for voter ID,” he said. “However, it could be used to purchase auto liability insurance for the millions of uninsured cars on our Texas roadways. That sounds like a good idea to me.”

“Texas does not have to wait on Washington to do something about the millions of uninsured immigrants driving kids to school, themselves to work, to church, etc.,” Adams said, adding that ignoring the problem “is to perpetuate de facto amnesty.”

Copyright May 14, 2015, Harvey Kronberg,, All rights are reserved. Reprinted with permission.


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