By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
On April 20, the TUL board sent out its own letter, announcing that after 25 years, the organization was closing its doors for two primary reasons: "The operating budget is depleted," and Price's use of TUL funds for personal expenses has resulted in his resignation. TUL educational programming would be continued by a group including Kyleen Wright and Jill Jeffrey, operating under the name Texans for Life Coalition. On April 27, The Dallas Morning News ran a front-page story under the headline: "Prominent anti-abortion group closes: Ex-president denies he misused money."
Price saw this article as punishment: "Why would the board reject offers of mediation? That's not what they wanted. They wanted a front-page story that would have a headline about misusing funds. It was pure ambition and revenge from two people who wanted to ruin me and nail the organization shut."
Not true, Wright says. "We were in a crisis mode trying to save our organization. Bill was not in a position to offer that leadership. That was something that could not be mediated."
Questions of betrayal aside, Price says he is ready to move on. He says he knows he can't build anything on "the ground of bitterness and anger," but he still has the same fire for the movement, which he believes, more than ever, is aligned with his own moderate views.
Although a no-compete clause in his separation agreement prevents him from forming a new organization until September, he has begun the process of recruiting a new board of like-minded people.
"I grew up watching things start from scratch," he says. "I may have a steeper hill to climb this time, but I am tanned, and I am rested, and I am ready."