Texas state Rep. Ryan Guillen is sending shockwaves through Texas politics as he announced his decision to switch from the Democratic Party to the GOP this week.
Guillen’s district, which represents Rio Grande City along the southern border, is being redrawn to be extremely favorable toward Republicans, which likely solidified his move.
“Friends, something is happening in South Texas, and many of us are waking up to the fact that the values of those in Washington, D.C., are not our values, not the values of most Texans,” Guillen said, according to the Texas Tribune.
“The ideology of defunding the police, of destroying the oil and gas industry and the chaos at our border is disastrous for those of us who live here in South Texas.”
In McAllen, Texas, a Republican narrowly won the mayoral race in June, showing a shift across all levels of government.
According to Mark Jones of Rice University, Guillen was considered the least liberal member of his caucus.
While conservative leadership already dominates in Texas, this one lawmaker’s decision is reflective of a nationwide political trend.
A recent poll from ABC News and The Washington Post revealed that registered voters have a preference for Republicans over Democrats by 10 percentage points on a generic ballot.
In South Texas, that mostly comes down to issues including the border crisis and economic woes such as inflation.
The Biden administration has done a poor job at taking initiative on problems that matter to Americans and is instead shifting the blame onto the previous White House or circumstances outside of its control.
Although President Joe Biden has promised to govern moderately, the White House seems to be catering to progressives with its Build Back Better agenda.
Guillen noticed the values in D.C. are political expediency and inaction, so he knew that becoming a Republican for his constituents would be the most effective move.
“Welcome to the party of freedom, opportunity & prosperity @RyanGuillen,” Republican Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted following Guillen’s announcement.
“As Dems move further left, they’re abandoning the people of South Texas & their values. Rep. Guillen’s decision to switch parties is indicative of a shifting landscape in South Texas.”
If Guillen’s frustration is any indication of the country at large, 2022 will be a disaster for Democrats.
Author: Cameron Arcand