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Some in Texas GOP signon to #neverTrump letter

A #neverTrump letter went out in early October, with 30 Republican former members of Congress saying GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump is “unqualified” to be president and that they will not vote for him.

On the list were two Texans: former U.S. House Rep. Steve Bartlett, a former mayor of Dallas, and former U.S. House Rep. Ed Foreman, a former West Texan who served one term in Congress in the 1960s before he moved to New Mexico, where he also served a single term.

Foreman, 82, is now a motivational speaker in Dallas. He was most recently in the news for another reason — he had an outburst at the 2014 trial of his associate, convicted huckster Kevin Trudeau who is serving a 10 year sentence for fraud.

“I am a former U.S. congressman,” Foreman shouted several times, according to the Chicago Tribune, before the judge had him thrown out.

Still time to get ID for election

If you don’t have a photo ID, there’s time to get one before the Nov. 8 election.

The Department of Public Safety offers Election Identification Certificates at its driver license offices during regular hours to Texas voters who have no other valid form of photo ID.

And a number of driver license offices will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 22 29 just to issue Election Identification Certificates. Local offices open include:

  • Fort Worth-East Office, 3500 Miller Ave.;
  • Fort Worth-Mega Center, 8301 Brentwood Stair Road;
  • Fort Worth-South Office, 6413 Woodway Drive;
  • Hurst Office, 624 NE Loop 820

Councilman to visit Cuba

In February, Fort Worth Sister Cities International is taking its second trip to Cuba, and among the 26-member delegation of Fort Worth business people and educators will be District 4 Councilman Cary Moon.

The nine-day trip includes visits to Trinidad, Cienfuegos and Havana, where the group will meet with business and government officials in an effort to open doors should trade with the country resume.

Moon says it was an opportunity he didn’t want to pass up.

“We’re going to be promoting Fort Worth,” Moon said. “I don’t know what to expect, but I’m prepared.”

Fort Worth Sister Cities took a group of 25 to Cuba in January, which served as an educational and exploratory trip in case the U.S. trade embargo in place since 1960 is lifted, said Mae Ferguson, president and CEO.

“We had such a good response,” she said. “There are potential opportunities.”

Ex-Im Bank

Some Texas members of the U.S. House and Senate have been leaders in opposing the Export-Import Bank of the U.S., which uses federal credit to help American exporters sell products abroad. Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Dallas and chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, and Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, both Republicans, supported its near-shutdown last year and inability to write new loans – which lasted six months.

But many local interests are at play. Texas is the No. 1 exporting state, and U.S. Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, supports an amendment this year to let the bank decide on large-ticket deals with a quorum of only two board of directors members. Only two board members are in place, and approval of a third is unlikely in an election year. Congress has not acted on the amendment.

One of the largest users of the bank is Boeing Corp., but at a recent announcement of a nearly $19 billion landmark deal for 100 aircraft with Qatar Airways at the swanky Four Seasons Hotel in Washington, D.C., there was no mention of Ex-Im – until Politex asked about it. Ray Conner, CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, insisted that Ex-Im is necessary – maybe not in this instance, but others – and Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways, said not all airlines are as in sound financial shape as his.


Texas exported its signature South by Southwest, or SXSW, festival to Washington where it was re-imagined on a smaller but much more high profile way on the …White House lawn.

Re-christened South by South Lawn, or SXSL, the combination high-tech display/global issues discussion group/music festival/environmental awareness/futurist event was held this month, with invitations limited to about 2,000 people.

And the headliner was definitely President Barack Obama, who was so taken with his visit to SXSW in Austin in March — the first by a president — that he got the White House geared up to do its version. Austin Mayor Steve Adler kicked off the festivities.

The most viral moment: Oscar winner actor Leonardo DiCaprio on a panel with Obama and Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist at Texas Tech University.

“If you do not believe in climate change, you do not believe in facts or science or empirical truths, and in my opinion you should not be allowed to hold public office,” said DiCaprio, whose new documentary, Before the Flood, will air on National Geographic Channel Oct. 30.

Vulnerable district

It was always going to be a tight race, but now pundits have firmly put U.S. Rep. Will Hurd, R-Helotes, in the “vulnerable” column.

Roll Call, a news outlet that covers Congress, has placed Hurd sixth on the list of the 10 most vulnerable House members in the November elections.

Hurd is being challenged by the Democrat he beat in 2014, former U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego of Alpine. The 23rd congressional district stretches over 800 miles from the outskirts of San Antonio along the border to the El Paso suburbs.

Staff writer Sandra Baker contributed to this report.

Election Day will be here before you know it. For more information about candidates on the Nov. 8 ballot, go to the Star-Telegram’s website, www.star-telegram.com, to read the online Voters Guide.

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