Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Hutchison still unsure on run for governor

Expand Messages
  • Greg Cannon
    http://www.dfw.com/mld/startelegram/news/local/10845295.htm Posted on Tue, Feb. 08, 2005 Senator still unsure on run for governor By Jack Douglas Jr.
    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 8, 2005
    • 0 Attachment

      Posted on Tue, Feb. 08, 2005

      Senator still unsure on run for governor

      By Jack Douglas Jr.

      Star-Telegram Staff Writer

      FORT WORTH - U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison said
      Monday that she is still considering whether to run
      against Gov. Rick Perry next year, and she vowed not
      to be swayed in her decision by political forces who
      want to prevent such a race.

      Hutchison acknowledged that Perry supporters are
      preparing for a campaign against her, including
      questioning her credentials as a conservative, if she
      runs for governor.

      "I have heard that some people will put in whatever it
      takes to defeat me. But that is of no consequence to
      me," Hutchison said after speaking at a luncheon
      sponsored by the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce and
      the Fort Worth Petroleum Club.

      Perry's campaign manager, Luis Saenz, declined Monday
      to speculate on a race between Perry and Hutchison.

      "The governor is focused on reforming education,
      cutting property taxes, improving transportation and
      creating jobs," Saenz said. "There will be plenty of
      time for politics later."

      Hutchison said she will most likely decide this summer
      whether she will take on Perry, a fellow Republican,
      in a primary matchup that could prove divisive in the
      state's GOP.

      State Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn is another
      Republican considering a run for governor.

      Hutchison denied speculation that President Bush or
      Republicans close to him have attempted to persuade
      her to stay in Washington rather than creating a party
      rift by challenging Perry.

      "The president ... would not get involved," she said.

      Hutchison and Perry have in recent months publicly
      disagreed on how to solve the school-finance crisis.
      And Hutchison said last month that Perry and other
      Republican lawmakers in Austin failed to take
      advantage of $104 million in federal money for health
      insurance for children.

      "I just want to see what the lay of the land is after
      the legislative session. I'll certainly take into
      consideration all of the factors," Hutchison said

      "If the issues I think are important to Texas are
      addressed in the right way, I [won't] be running."
    • Ram Lau
      What do you think about her odds, Greg? Ram
      Message 2 of 3 , Feb 9, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        What do you think about her odds, Greg?

      • greg
        Most people here in Texas seem to be sure that Hutchison will beat Perry (the incumbent) and then beat whoever the Democrats nominate, and be our third female
        Message 3 of 3 , Feb 10, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          Most people here in Texas seem to be sure that Hutchison will beat
          Perry (the incumbent) and then beat whoever the Democrats nominate,
          and be our third female governor. I don't know enough Republicans to
          know why there's suddenly this split in the state party. But there
          definetely is some sort of split. It may just be caused by the
          personal ambitions of Hutchison and Perry, or it may be ideological.
          Perry is being backed by influential businessmen in my hometown, El
          Paso. Hutchison, as far as I know, has never strayed from the party
          line while in the Senate. Polls show her as far more popular than
          Perry, both among Republicans among Texans in general. And she has
          said that she won't run for governor if the state government starts
          doing what she thinks it ought to (exactly what that is, I don't know).

          Personally, I like the other Republican running, Carol Keeton Rylander
          McClellan Strayhorn (and there may be more), better than either Perry
          or Hutchison. Strayhorn is the comptroller general, a sort of
          financial ombudsman (or ombudswoman actually). I have no idea what her
          positions are on social issues, but she has a reputation as a champion
          of fiscal responsibility and her slogan is "one tough grandma". She's
          the mother of White House spokesman Scott McClellan. But she's not as
          well-known as either Perry or Hutchison and she's already way behind
          in fundraising.

          As far as I know, only one Democrat has announced he's running, and
          that's former congressman Chris Bell. I'd like to say he, or any
          Democrat, has a chance at winning, but I don't think they really do.
          I've heard rumors that last year's Libertarian presidential candidate,
          Michael Badnarik, may run. And, of course, there's the independent
          candidate, Kinky Friedman. If he gets on the ballot, I may end up
          voting for him. To get on the ballot, he'll need to gather about
          45,000 signatures during a one month period next spring (it's 45,000
          because that's 1% of how many people voted in the governor race in
          2002, that's what the law requires for independent or third parties
          have to get on the ballot). A friend of mine may try to organize a
          local signature-gathering and I may help her. I gathered signatures
          for Nader in 2000 and people were willing to sign even if they didn't
          plan to vote for him, and I think Friedman is a lot more popular here
          than Nader was. The problem is that any signature is invalid if that
          person votes in the primaries.

          All of this, of course, is ignoring that the governor of Texas is a
          very weak office. The lieutenant governor actually has more power.
          It's a legacy of when powerful governors were accused of misusing
          their power (the Radical Republican who was in office during
          Reconstruction, and then Pa Ferguson and Ma Ferguson in the 1920s). No
          one's paying attention to the race for lieutenant governor (not even
          me). The incumbent for that office is a Republican, David Dewhurst I
          think is his name. The office of Texas governor is now perhaps seen as
          a stepping stone to the presidency though, and Hutchison is rumored to
          have that on her mind.

          And the race for senator is also very important. The only candidate
          there so far is Republican Congressman Henry Bonilla who will only run
          for senator if Hutchison runs for governor. I know people here worried
          that a Hispanic Republican candidate would draw support from
          Hispanics, one of the few groups of supporters that Texas Democrats
          have left. There are of course plenty of Hispanic politicians the
          Democrats could nominate, but there's no reason to think that any of
          them would draw support from Texans who normally vote Republican. So I
          think the Republican will win the Senate race, whether their candidate
          is Bonilla or Hutchison. Before Bonilla announced his intentions, I'd
          been wondering why the GOP didn't just sit Perry and Hutchison down
          together and tell them to switch jobs.

          So that's my take on things. Next year we'll get a new senator and a
          new governor, both of them Republicans. Unless Hutchison changes her
          mind, which is still very possible.
          --- In prezveepsenator@yahoogroups.com, "Ram Lau" <ramlau@y...> wrote:
          > What do you think about her odds, Greg?
          > Ram
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.