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Straus, Speaker of Texas House, Endorses Romney

Straus' endorsement comes as a new poll shows Rick Santorum with a huge lead in Texas.
Bob Daemmrich/Texas Tribune
Straus' endorsement comes as a new poll shows Rick Santorum with a huge lead in Texas.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is picking up a big Texas endorsement Tuesday — from Speaker of the House Joe Straus.

“The people of Texas are looking for a leader that will stand up to President Obama and clearly articulate conservative values. We’ve had enough of the out-of-control spending, government intrusion, and economic decline of the last three years,” Romney said in a release. “I look forward to working with Joe in the months to come as I outline my vision to restore America’s greatness.”

The Straus endorsement comes as a new University of Texas/Texas Tribune pollshows rival Rick Santorum with a huge lead in the Lone Star State, crushing both Newt Gingrich and Romney by double digit margins. Gov. Rick Perry, who withdrew from the presidential race late late last month, has endorsed Gingrich.

Straus, a San Antonio Republican who has served two terms as Texas House speaker, cited Romney’s career in business and his oversight of the 2002 Olympics as evidence that the former Massachusetts governor has what it takes to fix a troubled nation.

“Mitt Romney has proven his ability to turn around troubled organizations, and I can think of few places more in need of a turnaround than Washington, D.C.,” Straus said in the release. “We've seen a number of good candidates in this primary race; I believe Mitt Romney is the best choice to defeat President Obama and bring our Texas spirit of low taxes, limited government, balanced budgets and fiscal conservatism to Washington.”

Jay Root is a native of Liberty. He never knew any reporters growing up, and he has never taken a journalism class in his life. But somehow he got hooked on the news business. It all started when he walked into the offices of The Daily Texan, his college newspaper, during his last year at the University of Texas in 1987. He couldn't the resist the draw: it was the the biggest collection of misfits ever assembled. After graduating, he took a job at a Houston chemical company and realized it wasn't for him. Soon he was applying for an unpaid internship at the Houston Post in 1990, and it turned into a full-time job that same year. He has been a reporter ever since. He has covered natural disasters, live music and Texas politics — not necessarily in that order. He was Austin bureau chief of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for a dozen years, most of them good. He also covered politics and the Legislature for The Associated Press before joining the staff of the Tribune.
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