Thursday, October 30th, 2014

Fresh (re-baked) blasts from Ted Cruz, David Dewhurst

On July 10, 2012, Ted Cruz made public this ad saying David Dewhurst deceived viewers about his past position on a payroll tax.

Austin’s Quorum Report alerted us to fresh ads from Republican U.S. Senate hopefuls David Dewhurst and Ted Cruz -- both of them touching on topics we have fact-checked.

The ad promoting Dewhurst, the state’s lieutenant governor, makes no mention of Cruz, the attorney he faces in a July 31, 2012, primary runoff. But its theme -- that Dewhurst is a long-time businessman -- reminded us of our April 2012 check of GOP candidate Tom Leppert’s claim that Cruz had not led a business. (See Dewhurst's ad here.)

That’s True.

Cruz, a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP in Houston, has held lawyer posts in Texas and Washington, where he also served in two federal posts while George W. Bush was president. He is a former Texas solicitor general, a job that entailed leading state government’s legal appeals before state and federal courts, including the Supreme Court. Cruz was appointed to the post by Attorney General Greg Abbott, the state’s chief lawyer.

In his ad, Cruz cites a Truth-O-Meter article we posted this week by noting that we rated False a June debate claim by Dewhurst that he had never supported a payroll tax. In 2005, Dewhurst presided over the Senate as it adopted a revision of the state’s business franchise tax that included payroll-tax elements.

Ultimately, no payroll tax passed into law. Still, it’s incorrect that Dewhurst never supported such a tax.