Archive for the ‘Elections’ Category

Final Statewide Race Runoff Update

Monday, May 26th, 2014

Tomorrow is the Texas primary runoff, so now would be a good time to find your voting card and confirm your polling place.

A final roundup of runoff tidbits:

  • The Dallas Morning News says that Dan Patrick is poised to win due to his staunch opposition to illegal immigration. Oversimplified, but not entirely wrong. They also say Patrick has done a good job connecting with Ted Cruz supporters.
  • The end for Dewhurst draws nigh.
  • Dan Branch would have raised more money for the Attorney General race than Ken Paxton…were it not for the $1 million loan from Midland oilman Tim Dunn via Empower Texans PAC. Now you see why so many liberal reporters call Michael Quinn Sullivan the most powerful figure in Texas politics.
  • Talk show host Dana Loesch endorses Paxton. Less a move-the-needle endorsement than a reminder that conservatives are united on Paxton’s side.
  • Hey, that union Branch lobbied for totally wasn’t a member of the AFL-CIO…at least when he lobbied for it.
  • Governor Rick Perry took the unusual step of endorsing Sid Miller for Agriculture Commissioner over Tommy Merritt.
  • Some controversy over Miller’s campaign loan repayments.
  • On the Democrat side of the Ag Commissioner runoff, Kinky Friedman is running against an invisible opponent. “In the May 27 runoff the choice for the party’s faithful is either Friedman or Jim Hogan, a former dairy farmer who hasn’t campaigned for the office or even has a campaign website…Hogan could not be reached for comment because a phone number listed under his name was out of service and the Democratic Party of Texas did not respond to a request for other contact information.” Also, win or lose, Kinky said this is his last race.
  • Hogan seems to be taking a very Zen approach to campaigning.
  • One website has tried to fill the Jim Hogan void.
  • Here’s a Texas Tribune piece on the runoff between rich guy David Alameel and Larouchite Kesha Rogers for the Democratic Senate nomination. Fun as it would be to see Rogers upset Alameel, I don’t see it in the cards.
  • Finally, just in case you were unclear, Texas Monthly‘s Paul Burka is very upset that Republican primary voters continue to prefer actual Republicans over Republicans who act like Democrats once in office.
  • Here is who I will be voting for tomorrow (all of whom I expect to win):

  • Dan Patrick for Lt. Governor
  • Ken Paxton for Attorney General
  • Sid Miller for Agriculture Commissioner
  • Wayne Christian for Railroad Commissioner
  • What UKIP’s Big Election Win Means

    Saturday, May 24th, 2014

    The UK Independence Party (universally known as UKIP) won a big victory in UK Council and European Parliament elections.

    I’ve been struggling with how to frame the significance of UKIP’s victory without committing the sort of ghastly “distant observer” mistakes that Europeans do when analyzing American political results (such as the British liberal who confidently assured me that Texas was becoming a blue state).

    Fortunately, Peter Oborne in The Spectator has done the task far better than I could have, so I’m going to break with blogging tradition by quoting whopping great swathes of his analysis.

    When [UKIP head Nigel Farage] emerged as a force ten years ago, Britain was governed by a cross-party conspiracy. It was impossible to raise the issue of immigration without being labelled racist, or of leaving the EU without being insulted as a fanatic. Mainstream arguments to shrink the size of the state, or even to challenge its growth, were regarded as a sign of madness or inhumanity — hence Michael Howard’s decision to sack Howard Flight for advocating just that during the 2005 election campaign. The NHS and Britain’s collapsing education system were beyond criticism. Any failure to conform was policed by the media, and the BBC in particular.

    Meanwhile, the three main political parties had been captured by the modernisers, an elite group which defied political boundaries and was contemptuous of party rank and file. As I demonstrated in The Triumph of the Political Class (2007), politicians suddenly emerged as a separate interest group. The senior cadres of the New Labour, Conservative and Lib Dem parties had far more in common with each other than ordinary voters. General elections were taken out of the hands of (unpaid) party activists and placed in the hands of a new class of political expert. Ed Miliband’s expensive American strategist, David Axelrod, who flew into London on a fleeting visit to the shadow cabinet last week, is an example.

    In this new world, the vast majority of voters ceased to count. The new political class immediately wrote off all voters in safe seats — from unemployed ship-workers in Glasgow to retired lieutenant colonels in Tunbridge Wells. Their views could be disregarded because in electoral terms they were of no account. This callous attitude brought into existence a system of pocket boroughs in parts of Scotland, driving traditional Labour voters into the hands of the SNP and (as can now be seen clearly with hindsight) jeopardising the union. The only voters that political modernisers cared about were those in Britain’s approximately 100 marginal seats — and even the majority of those were considered of no significance. During the 2005 general election I went to see the co-chairman of the Conservatives, Maurice Saatchi, who boasted that barely 100,000 swing voters in the marginal seats mattered to him. Saatchi reassured me that the Conservative party had bought a large American computer that would (with the help of focus groups) single out these voters and tell them what they needed in order to make them vote Conservative.

    The majority of national journalists, for the most part well-paid Londoners, were part of this conspiracy against the British public. They were often personally connected with the new elite, with whom they shared a snobbery about the concerns of ordinary voters.

    Immigration is an interesting case study. For affluent political correspondents, it made domestic help cheaper, enabling them to pay for the nannies, au pairs, cleaning ladies, gardeners and tradesmen who make middle-class life comfortable.

    These journalists were often provided with private health schemes, and were therefore immune from the pressure on NHS hospitals from immigration. They tended to send their children to private schools. This meant they rarely faced the problems of poorer parents, whose children find themselves in schools where scores of different languages were spoken in the playground. Meanwhile the corporate bosses who funded all the main political parties (and owned the big media groups) tended to love immigration because it meant cheaper labour and higher profits.

    Great tracts of urban Britain have been utterly changed by immigration in the course of barely a generation. The people who originally lived in these areas were never consulted and felt that the communities they lived in had been wilfully destroyed. Nobody would speak up for them: not the Conservatives, not Labour, not the Lib Dems. They were literally left without a voice.

    To sum up, the most powerful and influential figures in British public life entered into a conspiracy to ignore and to denigrate millions of British voters. Many of these people were Labour supporters. Ten years ago, when Tony Blair was in his pomp, some of these voters were driven into the arms of the racist British National Party and its grotesque leader Nick Griffin. One of Britain’s unacknowledged debts to Nigel Farage is the failure of Griffin’s racist project. Disenfranchised Labour voters tend to drift to the SNP in Scotland and Ukip in England.

    Read the whole thing.

    Mark Steyn has some choices quotes on the meaning of UKIP’s victory as well (as he almost invariably does):

    A casual observer might easily assume the election was being fought between Farage’s UKIP and a Tory-Labour-Liberal-Media coalition.

    (snip)

    The British media spent 20 years laughing at UKIP. But they’re not laughing now — not when one in four electors takes them seriously enough to vote for them. So, having dismissed him as a joke, Fleet Street now warns that Farage uses his famous sense of humor as a sly cover for his dark totalitarian agenda — the same well-trod path to power used by other famous quipsters and gag-merchants such as Adolf Hitler, whose Nuremberg open-mike nights were legendary. “Nigel Farage is easy to laugh at . . . that means he’s dangerous,” declared the Independent. The Mirror warned of an “unfulfilled capacity for evil.” “Stop laughing,” ordered Jemma Wayne in the British edition of the Huffington Post. “Farage would lead us back to the dark ages.” The more the “mainstream” shriek about how mad, bad, and dangerous UKIP is, the more they sound like the ones who’ve come unhinged.

    UKIP is pronounced “You-kip,” kip being Brit slang for “sleep.” When they write the book on how we came to this state of affairs, they’ll call it While England Kipped. A complacent elite assured itself that UKIP would remain an irritating protest vote, but that’s all. It was born in 1993 to protest the Maastricht treaty, the point at which a continent-wide “common market” finally cast off the pretense of being an economic arrangement and announced itself as a “European Union,” a pseudo-state complete with “European citizenship.” The United Kingdom Independence party was just that: a liberation movement. Its founder, a man who knew something about incoherent Euro-polities, was the Habsburg history specialist Alan Sked, who now dismisses the party as a bunch of “fruitcakes.” As old-time Perotistas will understand, new movements are prone to internecine feuds. UKIP briefly fell under the spell of the oleaginous telly huckster Robert Kilroy-Silk, who subsequently quit to found a party called “Veritas,” which he has since also quit.

    But Farage was there at the founding, as UKIP’s first-ever parliamentary candidate. In 1994, a rising star of the Tory party, Stephen Milligan, was found dead on his kitchen table, with a satsuma and an Ecstasy tab in his mouth, and naked except for three lady’s stockings, two on his legs and one on his arm. In his entertaining book, one of the few political memoirs one can read without forcing oneself to finish, Farage has a melancholy reflection on Milligan’s bizarrely memorable end: “It was the sad destiny . . . of this former President of the Oxford Union to contribute more to public awareness — albeit of a very arcane nature — by the manner of his death than by his work in life.” That’s to say, the late Mr. Milligan more or less singlehandedly planted the practice of “auto-erotic asphyxiation” in the public consciousness — since when (as John O’Sullivan suggested here a while back) the Tory party seems to have embraced it as a political philosophy.

    At the time, Milligan’s death enabled a by-election in the constituency of Eastleigh. Farage stood for UKIP, got 952 votes (or 1.4 percent), and narrowly beat the perennial fringe candidate Screaming Lord Sutch of the Monster Raving Loony party, which, in a perceptive insight into the nature of government, was demanding more than one Monopolies Commission (the British equivalent of the Antitrust Division). While waiting for the count, Lord Sutch said, “Oi, Nige. Let’s go for a drink, shall we? The rest of this lot are a bunch of wankers.” In the BBC footage of the announcement of the results, Mr. Farage appears to be flushed and swaying slightly. Let Kilroy-Silk split to form a breakaway party called Veritas; Farage is happy to be in vino. He is a prodigious drinker and smoker. I can personally testify to the former after our Toronto appearance. As to the latter, not even Obama can get away with that in public. But Farage does.

    The wobbly boozer turned out to be the steady hand at the tiller UKIP needed. He was elected (via proportional representation) to the European Parliament, which for the aspiring Brit politician is Siberia with an expense account. Then, in 2010, Farage became a global Internet sensation by raining on the EU’s most ridiculous parade — the inaugural appearance by the first supposed “President of Europe,” not a popularly elected or even parliamentarily accountable figure but just another backroom deal by the commissars of Eutopia. The new “President” was revealed to be, after the usual Franco-German stitch-up, a fellow from Belgium called Herman van Rompuy. “Who are you?” demanded Farage from his seat in the European Parliament during President van Rompuy’s address thereto. “No one in Europe has ever heard of you.” Which was quite true. One day, Mr. van Rompuy was an obscure Belgian, the next he was an obscure Belgian with a business card reading “President of Europe.” But, as is his wont, Nigel warmed to his theme and told President van Rompuy that he had “the charisma of a damp rag and the appearance of a low-grade bank clerk.” A few days later, having conferred in their inner sanctum, the Eurocrats ordered Farage to make a public apology. So he did — to low-grade bank clerks for having been so ill-mannered as to compare them to President van Rompuy. He was then fined 2,980 euros (about $4,000) for his impertinence, since when he has referred to the European president as Rumpy-Pumpy, a British synonym for a bloody good shag.

    (snip)

    As I understand it, at some point in the last decade a Labour prime minister exited 10 Downing Street by the back door and a Conservative prime minister came in through the front. And yet nothing changed. And the more frantically Tory loyalists talk up the rare sightings of genuine conservatism — Education Secretary Michael Gove’s proposed reforms! — the more they remind you of how few there are.

    And, even more than the policies, the men advancing them are increasingly interchangeable. I lived in London for a long time and still get to Britain every few months, but I can barely tell any of these guys apart. They look the same, dress the same, talk the same. The equivalent British shorthand for “the Beltway” is “the Westminster village,” which accurately conveys both its size and its parochialism but not perhaps the increasingly Stepfordesque quality of its inhabitants. The Labour, Liberal, and Tory leaders all came off the assembly line within 20 minutes of each other in the 1960s and, before they achieved their present ascendancy, worked only as consultants, special advisers, public-relations men. One of them did something at the European Commission, another was something to do with a think tank for social justice — the non-jobs that now serve as political apprenticeships. The men waiting to succeed them are also all the same. There are mild variations in background — this one went to Eton, that one is heir to an Irish baronetcy — but once they determine on a life in politics they all lapse into the same smarmy voice, and they all hold the same opinions, on everything from the joys of gay marriage and the vibrant contributions of Islam to the vital necessity of wind farms and the historical inevitability of the EU. And they sound even more alike on the stuff they stay silent on — ruinous welfare, transformative immigration, a once-great nation’s shrunken armed forces…

    (snip)

    On the Continent, on all the issues that matter, competitive politics decayed to a rotation of arrogant co-regents of a hermetically sealed elite, and with predictable consequences: If the political culture forbids respectable politicians from raising certain topics, then the electorate will turn to unrespectable ones. As noted, Farage is too funny to make a convincing fascist, but, with the great unwashed pounding on the fence of their gated community, the Westminster village have redoubled their efforts.

    (snip)

    On the Continent, on all the issues that matter, competitive politics decayed to a rotation of arrogant co-regents of a hermetically sealed elite, and with predictable consequences: If the political culture forbids respectable politicians from raising certain topics, then the electorate will turn to unrespectable ones. As noted, Farage is too funny to make a convincing fascist, but, with the great unwashed pounding on the fence of their gated community, the Westminster village have redoubled their efforts.

    (snip)

    Farage is a close student of the near-total collapse of the intellectually bankrupt Canadian Conservative party in the early Nineties, and its split into various factions. The western-based Reform party could not get elected nationwide, but they kept certain political ideas in play, which moved the governing Liberals to the right, and eventually enabled them to engineer a reverse takeover of the Tory party. UKIP, likewise, is keeping certain important, indeed existential questions in play, and it’s not inconceivable that Farage, who regards himself as a member of “the Tory family,” could yet engineer a reverse takeover of whatever post-Cameron husk remains half a decade down the road.

    Again, read the whole thing. (Which should be taken as a given for any Steyn piece. And since I’m swiping enormous chunks of his prose today, also consider buying some of his stuff.)

    One sign of how scared the political establishment is of UKIP is that the government is actually funding an advertising campaign against them.

    Here in the United States, both Republicans and Democrats should take a good, hard look at UKIP’s rise. Many of the “forbidden” topics UKIP is raising there (big government, control by a small cabal of elites, immigration) are animating the Tea Party (and even, to some extent, parts of Occupy).

    More Signs of “Dewhurst Disgust”

    Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

    More fallout from Jerry Patterson’s release of Dan Patrick’s mental health information from the 1980s to aid David Dewhurst.

    David Jennings of Big Jolly Politics, who was notable for being perhaps the only conservative blogger in Texas to back David Dewhurst over Ted Cruz in 2012, has declared that “the despicable attacks on Sen. Dan Patrick make me sick.”

    I’m sickened by the type of attacks that the guy I support, David Dewhurst, has put out in the last two months. The worst possible thing he could have done was take on Jerry Patterson and let him have control of his campaign, which is why I coined the term “Dewtterson”…. You don’t have to support Dan or vote for him to know that what the Dewtterson campaign, along with one compliant media outlet, has done to Dan is just plain wrong.

    (Hat tip: Push Junction.)

    The Dallas Morning News, also not Dan Patrick fans, have said that Patterson and Dewhurst say the latest developments “scrape moral bottom.”

    The Houston Chronicle joins in: “Dewhurst should be ashamed. This pathetic attempt at attacking a political opponent scrapes the bottom of the barrel.”

    Lynn Woolery is moderating a Dewhurst/Patrick debate in Salado tonight, and has a list of questions that (thankfully) focus entirely on current events, rather than things that happened in the 1980s.

    In other Lt. Governor’s race news:

  • Patrick announced he’s raised $4 million between February 23 and last week. Patrick also spent “$3.75 million on statewide media advertising and says he has $400,000 in cash remaining before the May 27 runoff.”
  • Missed this earlier: Ron Paul endorses David Dewhurst. Unlike other recent Dewhurst endorsements, that one might actually give him a point or two, or at least prompt another look from the Paul faithful.
  • Ugly Campaign Against Dan Patrick Gets Uglier

    Monday, May 19th, 2014

    Someone should contact the David Dewhurst campaign and inform them the the calendar doesn’t read 1989 anymore.

    There’s been yet another attack on Dan Patrick dating (like all Dewhurst’s attacks) from the golden age of hair metal. After Jerry Patterson endorsed David Dewhurst, he released documentation to reporters indicating Patrick sought hospitalization for depression.

    It’s impossible for an outsider to determine whether Patterson released the records on his own against Dewhurst’s wishes or whether Dewhurst is using the time-honored method of using surrogates to do his dirty work. However, the revelations obviously fit into the overall Team Dewhurst “stuck in the 1980s” attack strategy.

    So ham-handed and irrelevant are these latest attacks on Patrick that even people who aren’t wild about him are turned off by the tactics. “If anything, David Dew­hurst is only ensuring that Dan Patrick will win by a larger margin than he might have otherwise.”

    Even before the mental health revelations, Evan of Perry vs. World said that David Dewhurst did not deserve re-election This is significant in that he has been very critical of Dan Patrick throughout the campaign.

    In some future political science class, Dewhurst’s 2012 campaign against Ted Cruz and 2014 campaign against Dan Patrick are going to be dissected as outstanding examples of how not do negative advertising…

    Conservative America Now is Another Tyler Whitney Scam PAC

    Friday, May 16th, 2014

    If you can remember all the way back to Tuesday, I noted how “Patriots for Economic Freedom” is a scam PAC run for the benefit of consultant Tyler Whitney and lawyer Dan Backer.

    Another group I get email from is “Conservative America Now.” Just today they sent me a solicitation for Julianne Ortman in her senate race against Al Franken.

    Well, guess who is registered as the treasurer for Conservative America Now?

    And how much of the money this Tyler Whitney group raised found it’s way to actual conservative candidates?

    “This PAC didn’t make any contributions to federal candidates in the 2014 election cycle.”

    Again: If you want to donate to Julianne Ortman, do it directly.

    “Patriots for Economic Freedom” is a Scam PAC

    Tuesday, May 13th, 2014

    I’m on enough mailing lists that I get a lot of campaign/PAC/etc. solicitations. One of the ones I get pretty regularly in email are missives from “Patriots for Economic Freedom” seemingly soliciting for one or another notable conservative candidates.

    Take, for example, this one for Ted Cruz. They’ve also done solicitations featuring Allen West and Mia Love, and I just got one this morning for Oklahoma Senate candidate T. W. Shannon.

    Just one tiny little problem: Ted Cruz never authorized Patriots for Economic Freedom to solicit on his behalf.

    Well, actually two problems: The money Patriots for Economic Freedom raises doesn’t seem to get to the candidates. Indeed, the lion’s share seems to go to consultants Tyler Whitney and Dan Backer.

    That’s right: “Patriots for Economic Freedom” is a scam PAC, and has been pulling their scam since at least 2012.

    I don’t know who exactly is selling Patriots for Economic Freedom their email list (though I’m looking in your direction, NRO and Breitbart), but they need to stop. Every dollar spent supporting a scam PAC is a dollar not spent actually supporting a conservative candidate.

    And someone should consider suing Patriots for Economic Freedom for false advertising.

    And if you want to donate to Allen West, Mia Love or T.W. Shannon, do it directly.

    LinkSwarm for May 12, 2014

    Monday, May 12th, 2014
  • Health care costs up most since 1980. Thanks, ObamaCare!
  • And low wage workers are the ones hurt worst by the employer mandate.
  • Adventures in Liberal Racism:

    The late Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.V., a former leader of the KKK, twice was elected the majority leader in the U.S. Senate and served a 6-year stint as, ironically, minority leader in between. Add Harry Reid, Joe Biden, Bill Clinton and countless others to the list of elected Democrats who’ve said things just as racist as Sterling, yet faced no consequences.

    To liberals, people are their skin color first, and that should dictate their thoughts and behavior. To stray from that is somehow a betrayal. It’s the basest form of racism, even if the victim and the perpetrator share the same melanin.

    To progressives, you aren’t an individual, you’re your skin. Clarence Thomas isn’t a man, he’s a black man. He isn’t an American, he’s an African American. It’s the prefix, not the person, that matters. That, at its core, is racism.

    (Hat tip: Instapundit.)

  • “There’s no getting around the fact that people who reject everything the West stands for are guaranteed to live in poverty with a boot on their neck.”
  • Democrats doing as bad as they were in 2010? Nope. Worse.
  • Even the Washington Post has Republican chances of retaking Senate up to 82%.
  • They also admit that Obama’s ratings are hitting new lows.
  • Mark Steyn slams #BringBackOurGirls: “The wretched pleading passivity of Mrs Obama’s hashtag is just a form of moral preening.”.
  • Democrats can’t find anyone to run as a Democratic against David Jolly in FL-13 race. And the “independent” they endorsed doesn’t live in the district…
  • In Illinois, little things like being a convicted felon won’t keep you from overseeing millions of “anti-violence” program dollars.
  • Alan Derschowitz gets it right: “I don’t think we want the thought police to be intruding on people’s private conversations.”
  • Is China’s military a paper dragon?
  • Missed this: Defeated Democratic congressman (and Stupak-bloc flip-flopper) James Oberstar dead.
  • What is hereditary in the United States is not wealth but poverty.”

    The Left’s focus on the status of wealthy and high-income Americans is precisely backward — backward if improving the lives and opportunities of those born into poverty is your goal. If your goal is to increase the income and power of the public sector for your own economic and political ends, then of course it makes more sense to focus on the rich: That’s where the money is, and the perverse reality of the Left is that it cannot fortify its own interests by improving the lives of the poor but can do so by pillaging the rich.”

  • GOP establishment leader Eric cantor booed in his own district.
  • Nothing says “liberal tolerance” quite like a UC Santa Barbara teacher threatening to send Ted Cruz supporters home in a body bag.
  • Russia passes a “bloggers law.”
  • 2013 Walter Duranty awards for media liars were given out. Seymour Hirsch received a lifetime achievement award…
  • Egyptian Muslim group declares that democracy must be eliminated because ”it does not allow to save Muslims and theorizes the equality of Jews, Copts and Muslims and must therefore be condemned”.
  • Three girls fined $3,500 for wearing bikinis. In Italy. [Edited to add: Jihad Watch has updated the story as a hoax.]
  • Democratic trial lawyer and Wendy Davis backer Linda Blue Baron is leaving Texas. Tort reform just keeps paying dividends…
  • Jeeze, you commit one or two little axe murders, and suddenly you’re not dating material.
  • The novel is dead yet again. Or: Will Self implores those uncouth striplings to vacate his sward.
  • Crazy spider gymnast.
  • Adventures in Painful Advertising: David Dewhurst Edition

    Thursday, May 8th, 2014

    Ah, Team Dewhurst: Find an issue no one cares about, then run it into the ground. Their latest attack ad (or attack viral video) doubles down on all the unsuccessful attacks in his previous ads.

    “Hey, let’s take a popular Disney song and ruin it! That will get people to vote for us!” Buzzfeed wonders if it’s the worst political attack ad of all time.

    Dan Patrick has been a state senator since 2007. If Team Dewhurst has made an ad actually attacking that record, rather than Patrick’s business dealings in the 1980s, I haven’t seen it.

    It’s like no one on the Dewhurst team actually understood why the Cruz team flash ads were so effective in the 2012 race. Hint: They made you chuckle rather than cringe.

    I can’t think of another campaign team that spends so much time and money on ineffective attack ads as Team Dewhurst. It’s becoming more and more obvious that Buddy Barfield wasn’t the biggest problem with Dewhurst’s 2012 campaign…

    A Look at the Dewhurst/Patrick Runoff

    Tuesday, May 6th, 2014

    With so much Obama Administration scandal, sleaze and general fail, I haven’t devoted as much time to the statwide primary runoffs as they deserve. The Lt. Governor’s race in particular offers up the interesting dynamic of well-funded incumbent David Dewhurst getting trounced in the primary by state senator Dan Patrick. So here’s an update on the latest race news, which is lamentably heavy on who did what while owning a Houston business in the 1980s.

    The two debated:

    There has also been a lot of back and forth on two Dewhurst attack ads against Patrick:

    There’s the little problem of Dewhurst accusing Patrick of having changed his name to “hide from debts.” In fact, Patrick had used the name Dan Patrick as a his working name since 1978, discharged all his debt in bankruptcy filings in 1987, and legally changed his name from Dannie Gobe to Dan Patrick in 2003. This is a case where the Dewhurst campaign connected two dots that simply weren’t connected for the sake of an attack ad. No wonder the claim got rated “Pants on Fire.” (On the other hand, Politifact also dings Patrick for suggesting they rated the entire ad as untrue, rather than just that one part of it.)

    Politico also noted that Patrick discharged the payroll taxes debt in 1989. (Consider this your periodic reminder that Politico is considerably more trustworthy when the issue in question features no favored Democrats to protect…) Here are Patrick’s responses to the charges, where he also touches on tax problems Dewhurst’s companies had in the 1980s as well, and his own response ad:

    Speaking of that second Dewhurst ad, Dewhurst supporter David Jennings dings Dewhurst for shirtless picture of Dan Patrick taken at a charity event. In fact, all the unflattering photos in that ad strike me as more than a little bush league.

    As for the “hiring illegal aliens” charge Dewhurst has leveled:

  • Jerry Patterson tried using it in the primary, and it got him nowhere.
  • The idea that a restaurant or club owner in Houston might have hired illegal alien help shocks absolutely no one these days.
  • While if true, it does show a certain amount of hypocrisy on Patrick’s part, the charge is stale enough, and documentation of it so scanty, that I don’t see it being a successful line of attack for Dewhurst.
  • Dewhurst also spent an additional $600,000 on attack ads. It’s strange to see Dewhurst doubling down on the same tactic that backfired so badly in his race against Cruz. While there’s a bit more meat to the Patrick charges than the Cruz ads, I just don’t see the payoff putting so much money into attacks over business decisions Patrick made a quarter-century ago during the oil bust.

    Other race news:

  • Patterson endorses David Dewhurst. That’s a good pickup for Dewhurst (certainly a lot better than the Craig James endorsement in the 2012 Senate race), but I don’t think it moves the needle.
  • Dewhurst picks up the endorsements of Battleground Tea Party of Texas (who I don’t know much about, except they’re from the Clear Lake area) and the Pearland Tea Party.
  • 1980s Savings and Loan scandal figure W. Harold Sellers was involved in helping Patrick buy a radio station. Patrick says he didn’t know about Sellers loan issues, which were eventually settled.
  • I’d love to bring you news on this race that doesn’t revolve around business decisions in the 1980s, but I’m not seeing much…
  • How Bad Does a Major Candidate Have To Suck For Their Spokesman To Resign?

    Thursday, May 1st, 2014

    Ask Bo Delp.

    “Bo Delp, spokesman and former communications director for Sen. Wendy Davis’ campaign for governor, has resigned.”

    (By the way, Delp seems to go by Dr. Robert Delp for his resume.)

    The Davis campaign has been roundly criticized from all sides (including liberal pundits and members of the press) for continued organizational problems and a candidate who did not appear to be ready for prime time. But for her spokesman to leave the most important, high profile, and well-funded Democratic campaign in Texas, things there must be even more dysfunctional than they appear.

    Delp said Thursday that he is “considering a number of other opportunities in Texas Democratic politics.” Yes, because there are so many Texas Democrats with a higher profile than Wendy Davis.

    Also, this bit is hardly reassuring for voters who want Davis to actually represent Texans and Washington, not just be another tool of the liberal elite:

    “Zac Petkanas, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s former communications director, became Davis’ communications director in March.”

    Evidently getting her money out-of-state wasn’t enough for Davis; now she has to import her personnel from the national Democratic Party elite as well…

    (Hat tip: Moe Lane.)