It's not a shock, but disappointing nonetheless: State Representative Jonathan Stickland, the Observer's BFF and favorite member of the Texas Legislature, is getting a primary challenger. The Reverend Scott W. Fisher, pastor of the Metroplex Chapel in Euless, announced this week that he's taking Stickland on.
"With my background in overseeing a juvenile system that affects over 100,000 youths [Fisher was appointed chairman of the Texas Youth Commission by former Governor Rick Perry], and my work in the healthcare system, I saw firsthand how dangerous and costly illegal immigration is," Fisher says in a press release. "We must secure the border and stop sanctuary cities because they bring crime and huge costs to taxpayers."
Considering Stickland's bona fides, it's hard to see much room for Fisher to attack the state representative from the right. Throughout his tenure in the Legislature, the always combative Stickland has, variously, replaced his office sign with one declaring himself a former fetus, accused Planned Parenthood of being "child murderers," repeatedly worn an AK-47 lapel pin and suggested that he wished fetuses could be armed so they could defend themselves against abortion, all while wearing his trusty sidearm to the Capitol each day and running up what he brags is the most conservative voting record in the House of Representatives. He's always good for entertainment, too. In May, Stickland was escorted out of a House committee meeting after being accused of signing up speakers who weren't even in Austin to back a bill being discussed — the Texas Rangers would later find that Stickland did just that, but didn't suggest any punishment. According to the Texas Tribune, Stickland aggravated House Speaker Joe Strauss and his allies so badly that at least two legislators saw Strauss ally Charlie Geren dangle a cookie on a string in front Strickland in a mocking attempt to lead him away from one of his frequent back-microphone stem-winders.
Stickland is the guy one loves if one embraces the darkness and enjoys the Texas Legislature as barely hopeful theater. It would be depressing to see him go, but he seems ready to put up a fight before the March 1 Texas GOP primary election.
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"Well folks you never get flak unless you are over the target. It seems the Austin machine has found a candidate. Tomorrow a Dewhurst supporter is rumored to announce for your house seat here in HD92. I wish he would call me and tell me why but we already know don't we?" Stickland said Monday night on Facebook. "I fought hard to defend your liberties down in Austin the last two sessions and I assure you I will work hard to earn your vote once again. Will you ?#?stickwithstickland??"
Fisher did not reply to a request to be interviewed, but if the "Books at My Bedside" section on his personal blog isn't opposition research on the pastor's part, it may give us a good idea of what we're in for. Fisher, apparently, is reading A Queer Thing Happened to America — a screed about the homosexual agenda — and The End Times Controversy: The Second Coming Under Attack, which is co-authored by Tim LaHaye of Left Behind fame.
This one should be a shit show.