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Re: Hutchison still unsure on run for governor

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  • 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 1 of 3 , Feb 10, 2005
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      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
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