You know Texas has been lauded a lot as a new model for how to run a state. California (and Democratically run) is the old way and Texas (and Republican run) is the new way. Rick Perry certainly is quick to point this out.
But when you look at what’s really going on, about the best thing you can say for the state legislature and governor is that they stay out of the cities’ way. They’ve kept tax rates low which has allowed cities to raise more taxes. And past that they don’t interfere very much.
When you look at the power house cities in Texas, they’re all run by Democrats. Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, and Houston all have Democratic mayors. And those are really the cities that are being looked at when they talk about Texas as a great place to live and do business. The rest of Texas is poor, uneducated, and propped up by moving money out of the urban areas to help pay for the rural ones. They are a massive financial liability for the state. The places that don’t work are overwhelmingly Republican and run by Republicans.
There are Republican suburbs, but those are all simply leaching off of the good Democratic policy. They get the roads, the public transportation, and the business infrastructure paid for by the cities, and they can spend all their money on education.
So perhaps Texas is actually a Democratic triumph in spite of Republican inefficiencies. It looks that way from where I’m sitting.