State Senator Joan Huffman (R – Houston) has earned the dubious distinction of twice being labeled one of Texas’ worst politicians by Texas Monthly.
Texas Monthly has issued ratings for legislators after each session going back to 1973 and the 63rd legislative session. They will typically rank the ten best and worst legislators for each session, a special award for the “Bull of the Brazos” for legislators where “the line between a scoundrel and a statesman can be hammered too thin to recognize,” and “furniture,” for those lawmakers “whose level of participation in the legislative process was indistinguishable from that of their desks and chairs.”
Twice in two sessions, Huffman earned a “worst legislator” designation.
In 2013, Texas Monthly rated Huffman among the worst legislators, primarily for her opposition to a bill preventing wrongful convictions in Texas. Although the bill passed the House 115 – 28, Huffman still opposed it, and killed it her committee. Texas Monthly reports Huffman said, “There’s nothing you can do to fix this bill for me,” and she refused to let it go forward.
Huffman was again awarded the dubious distinction of worst legislator in 2015, this time for amending ethics bills to exclude the financial disclosure of legislators’ spouses. As Texas Monthly points out, Huffman’s husband is a Houston nightclub owner who loaned her $500,000 for her 2008 campaign. These ’poison pill amendments forced Governor Abbott to veto the broader legislation, because they represented a backward step in substantive disclosure for public officials.
Further, Huffman sponsored legislation to remove the authority of the Travis County district attorney to prosecute public corruption, and transfer jurisdiction to the home county of the legislator. This would make it easier for officials to evade prosecution if they have stronger political relationships in their home counties. During the legislative process, when asked by colleagues about details of the bill, Huffman lack real answers, and told colleagues “I don’t know” and “I just disagree with you.”
As Texas Monthly puts it, “In theory, Huffman should represent her district, not just the interest of law enforcement and her own family. But judging by her record, you’d never know it.”
Texans deserve good government, and legislators who will put our families first. Call Joan Huffman at 512-463-0117 or email her at Joan.Huffman@senate.texas.gov. Tell her to stop protecting her own family and start protecting our families.