Posts Tagged ‘Jerry Patterson’

Deadline Filing Passes: Quick Impressions on Texas Statewide Races

Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

Monday was the deadline to file for the 2018 Texas primaries. You have to give credit to whoever in the Texas Democratic Party was in charge of candidate recruitment: unlike many previous years, “Democrats put up candidates for every statewide elected post, except one open seat on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, an initial tally of filings showed Monday night.”

Here are my quick impressions of some of the more competitive statewide primary races to be fought between now and March 6.

Democratic Governor’s Race

See this post. The press is going to cover this as an Andrew White vs. Lupe Valdez race. I think there’s a 50% chance Grady Yarborough makes the runoff.

Republican Agricultural Commissioner’s Race

This race has already turned nasty, with incumbent Sid Miller and challenger Trey Blocker launching nasty Facebook attack ads at each other. One of Blocker’s consultants is Matt Mackowiak, who was just elected to a 2018-2020 term as Travis County GOP chairman unopposed, and whose Twitter feed I follow.

Republican Land Commissioner’s Race

Former Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson has filed to run against incumbent George P. Bush. Patterson is going to have a real uphill fight to unseat Bush, since Patterson lost badly in his last race for Lt. Governor, coming in fourth in a four man race, and the Bush family machine has a legendary fundraising network, having raised more than $3 million in a down-ballot race in 2014. But various Alamo controversies and the fact that Bush has never run in even a slightly competitive race might give Patterson a chance to make the race close. Even so, Bush is still the heavy favorite.

Tomorrow (hopefully): A look at competitive U.S. congressional district races.

Texas Hits 1 Million CHL Holders

Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Here’s a milestone worth celebrating: Texas hits 1 million citizens possessing CHL/LTCs.

Remember how gun control advocates said violent crime would soar when more people were armed? Hasn’t happened. Both rates and absolute numbers of violent crimes in Texas have been falling since 1991, even as Texas population increased by almost 10 million people. Says CHL bill sponsor Jerry Patterson: “I’d say those who predicted shootouts at four-way stops need to apologize to the rest of us.”

If you’re wondering why more law-abiding citizens carrying guns has coincided with dropping crime rates, the book linked below might have some answers for you…

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…

Interview With Texas Lt. Governor Candidate Jerry Patterson

Saturday, March 1st, 2014

Friday night, I was finally able to get an interview with Texas Land Commissioner and Lt. Governor candidate Jerry Patterson, which I’d been meaning to do for quite a while. Below is a pretty close transcription of the interview (or as close as I could make it with my 45 words-a-minute fingers).

Lawrence Person: What do you see as current Lt. Governor David Dewhurst’s biggest mistakes in office?

Jerry Patterson: His biggest mistake is not a mistake but a shortcoming, that being having no ability to lead and motivate both voters and members of the senate. We all make mistakes, but shortcomings are more serious than mistakes.

Lawrence Person: Likewise, what qualities or policies do you think separate you from Dan Patrick and Todd Staples?

Jerry Patterson: Policy-wise, there’s very little difference. Between me and Dan, my story is not going to change from day to day and venue to venue. I feel no compulsion to tell you what I think you want to hear to like me.

As for Todd, I’m a little more of a risk-taker, I’m bolder, and I’m less consultant-driven.

Lawrence Person: What, if any, procedural changes would you make in running the Texas state senate?

Jerry Patterson: The first thing I’m going to do is roll the tape of the evening Wendy Davis carried out her filibuster, and make sure all the Democrats who helped encourage that riot are not in charge of committees.

I will also make it easier for the Lt. Governor to recommit bills from one committee to another.

Lawrence Person: The Lt. Governor has tremendous influence over the composition of the Legislative Budget Board. What specific background and qualities would you seek in those you would appoint to the board?

Jerry Patterson: They need to be fiscal conservatives, and they need to be resistant to those who blow smoke into places you don’t usually see it, and they need to have those qualities on a consistent basis.

Lawrence Person: How did the Concealed Handgun bill come about, and how hard was getting that passed?

Jerry Patterson: It had been attempted several times before. I sponsored it in 1993, passed it, and Gov. [Ann] Richards vetoed it. But it wasn’t a real CHL bill, it was just a referendum on whether to pass a CHL bill. In 1995, we have a new Governor, George W. Bush, who won in part because he promised to sign a CHL bill if it came to his desk. In 1995, I was sole author of SB 60, the CHL bill. It was a difficult task. We had a lot of Democratic support, and a lot of Republican opposition. It was made more difficult when Selena [the Tejano signer] was shot and killed by a deranged woman in Corpus Christi. But I told wavering legislators I would campaign against them if they did not live up to their commitment. Then I had to deal with hostile points-of-order to kill the bill. I was the chair of the conference committee, and I hired parliamentarians with a meticulous knowledge of the rules to make sure I didn’t make any mistake that would allow opponents to overturn the bill with a point-of-order. I think the final vote in the senate was about 22-8. And that included five yeas who wanted to vote no, but knew their district wouldn’t be happy.

Lawrence Person: What do you think are the most essential actions Texas needs to take to secure the border?

Jerry Patterson: There are several. We have to first realize that this is a three-legged stool: border security, assimilation, and immigration reform. You cannot have border security without immigration reform, and you cannot have immigration reform without border security. We have to stop birthright citizenship, we have to stop this bilingual ballot nonsense. You know what my name is on the Spanish-language ballot?

Lawrence Person: No, what?

Jerry Patterson: It’s Jerry Patterson. We need to do what the GOP platform calls for: biometric ID card for non-residents, no amnesty, a guest worker program with no path to citizenship. We need to focus on coyotes, narcotraffickers, terrorists, felons. That’s where our resources should be used, not chasing kitchen help.

Lawrence Person: Any final thought or message for BattleSwarm Blog readers?

Jerry Patterson: I’ll always be honest with you, and I won’t change what I say to get your vote.

Thanks to Jerry Patterson and his staff for taking the time to do the interview.

I have another interview with Lt. Governor candidate Dan Patrick which, do to technical difficulties on my part, I’m still trying to complete. Once that’s done I’ll put that up as well.

Texas Lt. Governor’s Race: State of Play and Update

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

The Lt. Governor’s race presents plenty of irony, namely in that it features incumbent Lt. Governor David Dewhurst, whose lost the 2012 Senate race to Ted Cruz, and three statewide office holders, all running as staunch conservatives, who endorsed Dewhurst over Cruz in that race.

Dewhurst’s strengths and weaknesses are the same he displayed in that race. On the plus side, he’s run and won high-profile statewide races, he’s Independently wealthy and thus can self-fund to an extent others can’t, and he helped govern Texas during a time our prosperity, job creation and fiscal discipline have been the envy of most states. On the negative side, conservatives have long had numerous gripes about Dewhurst, complaining that he gives too much senate power to minority Democrats and gives them too many committee chairs, and that he thwarts conservatives in many ways great and small. As I wrote at the time, “Dewhurst occupies that vast gray area between a RINO (think Arlen Specter before he went The Full Benedict) and a real movement conservative.” The 2012 Senate race also showed that Dewhurst is a remarkably poor debater and off-the-cuff speaker who does not seem to think well on his feet, and losing to Cruz damaged his political reputation. His social media outreach was poor during the Senate run, but seems to have improved for this race. As in the Senate race, Dewhurst has garnered the lion’s share of business group endorsements (with Staples second), and the clear majority of newspaper endorsements (hardly a plus for most conservatives).

State Senator Dan Patrick has a solid conservative record, but also a bit of a reputation as both a hothead and (as a former sportscaster) a something of an intellectual lightweight who has been dinged by some for poor debate performances. (I did a phone interview with Patrick that may or may not see the light of day due to a technical malfunction; in my brief interview he seemed bright, articulate, and knowledgeable about the Lt. Governor’s role in managing the senate and staffing the Legislative Budget Board.) Patrick was widely seen as a foe of Dewhurst during the 2012 Senate race, but ended up endorsing him at the last minute. Patrick is widely perceived as the primary choice of many social conservatives, and was prominent in the fight for the anti-TSA groping bill (which he sponsored) and the anti-sanctuary cities bill. The fact that both Jerry Patterson and Todd Staples have been attacking him in ads suggests he is indeed in second place behind Dewhurst. He has has been endorsed by Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, Young Conservatives of Texas, several evangelical ministers, and the late Bum Philips (Patrick was a sportscaster during the Luv Ya Blue heyday of the Houston Oilers in the late 1970s and early 1980s).

Jerry Patterson, the incumbent Land Commissioner, came into the race with the most buzz among and support among Texas conservative insiders, but that doesn’t seem to have translated into sufficient polling popularity with voters, with Patterson sitting in fourth place in the latest poll. Patterson gets a lot of credit for having written the bill that became the Concealed Handgun License law, and received an A+ rating from the NRA (Dewhurst, Patrick and Staples all received As). Several Texas conservatives I respect are firmly in the Patterson camp. Patterson has been endorsed by Dick Armey and Ron Paul.

Todd Staples, the incumbent Agricultural Commissioner, comes in at third place in the most recent poll, well behind Dewhurst and Patrick, despite having raised the second most money in the race behind Dewhurst. Staples also has a reputation as a solid conservative, and as a state senator penned the state defense of marriage clause. At 50 he’s the youngest of the four candidates by a decade. He’s been stressing border security, on which he did some work from the Agriculture Department. Staples has been endorsed by Nolan Ryan. and some property rights groups.

Are the polls accurate? Hard to say. At this point in the 2012 Senate race, people were predicting a runoff between Paul Sadler and Sean Hubbard on the Democratic side, and Hubbard ended up coming in fourth behind Addie Allen and the Grady Yarbrough juggernaut.

Whoever wins the Republican runoff (which looks very likely at this point) will face Democratic State Senator Leticia Van de Putte in the general.

Here is a debate between all four candidates:

Now some video ads from all four candidates. Dewhurst:




Now some race tidbits:

  • “Between Jan. 24 and Saturday, Dewhurst raised from others nearly $1.5 million — more than twice the amount drummed up in that period by the most successful of his competitors, Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples. Staples raised $650,000.”
  • Some of Dewhurst’s trail lawyer fund are also kicking money into his anti-Dan Patrick PAC: “The anti-Patrick PAC, Texans for Accountability, received $45,000 from Beaumont’s Provost Umphrey law firm, and a combined $25,000 from two women who identified themselves as paralegals for the Houston-based Gallagher law firm, headed by Mike Gallagher, former president of the Texas Trial Lawyer’s Association.”
  • Chart of advertising buys per candidate in statewide races.
  • The North Texas Tea Party issues no endorsement in the race.
  • All four candidates appear at a forum in Sugar Land.
  • KUHF panel thinks it’s a runoff between David Dewhurst and Dan Patrick.
  • David Bellow endorses Patrick.
  • Jerry Patterson’s attacks on Patrick are amounting to very little. I think the possibility that a sports bar Patrick owned in Houston in the early 1980s might have included illegal aliens among the staff is hardly going to come as a shock to just about any Texan.
  • Speaking of Patrick, an anti-Patrick PAC can’t even get its facts straight.
  • The New York Times weighs in on the race. It’s pretty much what you would expect
  • Patrick evidently had an amusing gay marriage typo on his Twitter account.
  • A look at Patterson’s support among Second Amendment supporters.
  • Waco Tribune interviews Patterson.
  • Staples campaigns in Plano.
  • The Austin American Statesman endorses Dewhurst.
  • Statewide Race Update for December 31, 2013

    Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

    I thought I would do a better job of keeping tabs on Texas statewide races, but there are just too many for me to do a good job tracking all of them. Going into next year, I’ll try to do a decent job of keeping track of the Governor’s Race (Spoiler: Greg Abbot wallops Wendy Davis), the Lt. Governor’s race, and the Attorney General’s race, and tidbits on any other races will just be a bonus. (If you know of any sites doing extensive coverage of the Ag Commissioner or Comptroller races, let me know.)

    Here’s a roundup that will include some oldish news.

  • The most hilarious liberal initiative in the Texas governor’s race has to be Lady Parts Justice PAC. No, this is not an Instapundit parody. Liberals have actually reduced half American citizens to their genitalia. “Ladies! Why think with your brain when you can think with your vagina?”
  • Wendy Davis hires out-of-state consultant to run her campaign. This is my shocked face.
  • On the Democratic side, Wendy Davis and a Reynaldo “Ray” Madŕigal have filed for governor (I’m assuming it’s the same Madrigal who pulled in 5.7% in a run for Corpus Christi Mayor in 2012) and outgoing El Paso Mayor John F. Cook is running for Land Commissioner.
  • Interview with Madrigal:

  • Greg Abbott pledges to keep Texas budgets small.
  • Abbot and Davis wrangle over redistricting lawyers fees.
  • Davis is not ready for prime time. “All this leaves me seriously wondering whether Davis’ campaign has any chance of winning in 2014. Or worse: whether Davis didn’t take the Valley seriously enough to come here polished and ready and with her A-team. Surely this type of poor venue and repetitive shallow non-statements and unprofessional media handling wouldn’t play, in say, a Dallas crowd.” And that’s from a liberal Democrat.
  • There was a Lt. Governor’s debate: – KCEN HD – Waco, Temple, and Killeen

  • Todd Staples releases a good list of heavy hitting donors.
  • David Dewhurst releases a better one. Harlan Crow, Jerry Jones, Red McCombs and Drayton MacLane all stick out as particularly heavy hitters. (Another name, Kevin Eltife, is probably best know as a Republican state senator who wants to raise taxes.)
  • David Dewhurst has a campaign video out:

  • Jerry Patterson touts his 2nd Amendment credentials:

  • Dan Patrick touts the endorsement of Texans for Fiscal Responsibility.
  • A closer look at how Michael Quinn Sullivan and TFR do endorsements.
  • Democratic State Senator Leticia Van de Putte of San Antonio makes her Lt. Governor’s run official.
  • Attorney General candidate Ken Paxton racks up over 220 East Texas endorsements for his Attorney General bid.
  • Paxton also campaigned in East Texas.
  • He also announced the endorsement of Ted Cruz for Senate chairman Kelly Shackelford:

  • As well as state senator Brian Birdwell

  • The Texas Tribune does a roundup of the AG race, noting Paxton had won 6 out of 6 straw polls, while Dan Branch raised the most money (including a check from George W. Bush).
  • Meanwhile, AG candidate Barry Smitherman touts his right to life endorsements.
  • AG candidate Dan Branch vowed to defend Texas Voter ID Laws. I doubt that’s a differentiator among GOP candidate…
  • Branch also picked up a lot of business endorsements, including Texas Association of Builders’ HOMEPAC, the Texas Farm Bureau AGFUND, and the Texas Apartment Association. It was always pretty clear Branch was going to get the lion’s share of “moneybags PACs” endorsements…
  • Susan Combs endorses Glenn Hegar for Comptroller.
  • Sid Miller is running for Agricultural Commissioner, and he’s already wrapped up endorsements from Young Conservatives of Texas, Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, and Ted Nugent.
  • Texas Statewide Race Update for October 16, 2013

    Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

    Slowly but surely I’m digging out from my post-Worldcon backlog, so I hope to do more on various statewide races soon-ish (for certain values of “soon-ish” that work out to “before the end of the year”).

  • Greg Abbott reaches out to Hispanics.
  • He also promises to keep the Texas economy rolling.
  • Liberal fossil Paul Burka reiterates that Wendy Davis is doomed.
  • Battleground Texas is all in on Davis.
  • And speaking of Battleground Texas, proving they’re super classy, they made fun of Abbott being in a wheelchair.
  • Official Abbott announcement on Wendy Davis entering the race.
  • Abbott further said that he’s not worried about Wendy Davis.
  • Today Davis announced fundraisers in Conroe, Magnolia, and Waco. Ha, just kidding! She’s raising money in New York and Washington, D.C.. Good. The more money she takes from national Democrats, they less they can spend on races they might actually win.
  • Davis’ “true, natural constituency is the national, mainstream media.”
  • Davis used to be all-abortion, all the time, but that issue is now strangely missing from her speeches.
  • Longshot Tom Pauken is touting an Amarillo forum straw poll where he garnered 57% of the vote. Longshot Libertarian Kathie Glass came in second. I think these results are about as significant as that one straw poll Glenn Addison won in 2011.
  • Republican longshot Lisa Fritsch enters the Governor’s race. Here’s her website.
  • I do wonder why none of these longshots have considered taking on George P. Bush in the Land Commissioner’s race.
  • David Dewhurst calls for Obama’s impeachment. Somehow I sincerely doubt that U.S. Senator David Dewhurst would be making such a declaration…
  • Jerry Patterson suggests kicking four states out of the union. The piece notes this proposal was tongue-in-cheek. It also notes that Patterson was author of the Texas Concealed Carry law back in 1995, which I had forgotten.
  • Attorney General candidates Ken Paxton and Dan Branch roll out dueling legal endorsements.
  • Paxton campaigned in Midland.
  • Kinky Friedman is going to run for Agricultural Commissioner again as a Democrat, running on a marijuana legalization platform.
  • George P. Bush raised money for his Land Commissioner’s race in Dripping Springs.
  • Texas Statewide Races Update for July 30, 2013

    Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

    Still getting up to speed, so expect these updates to be a bit random for, oh, the next five weeks or so.

  • Abbott: The Obama Administration’s Voting Rights Act lawsuit is purely political.

    The administration’s approach reveals the Democrats‘ fear that Republican candidates were making inroads with Hispanic voters. Democrats could never “turn Texas blue” if that trend continued, so they got the courts to draw district lines that guarantee Democratic victory in predominantly Hispanic areas.

    Instead of allowing the Voting Rights Act to work in a way the Constitution allows, the Obama administration is sowing racial divide to score cheap political points. The president is using the legal system as a sword to wage partisan battles rather than a shield to protect voting rights. This overreaching action undermines the Voting Rights Act and the rule of law. Texas will not tolerate it. So far, neither will the Supreme Court.

  • Abbot also appeared on Lou Dobbs to discuss voter ID:

  • He also appeared on the Mike Huckabee show:

  • And the Mike Gallagher Show:

  • And Trey Ware’s show on KTSA:

  • Huckabee, who last endorsed David Dewhurst in the Senate race, endorses Dan Patrick in the Lt. Governor’s race. I’m sure the endorsement had nothing to do with Huckabee’s son doing work for a consulting firm hired by Patrick…
  • Former state Rep. Ray Keller is running for the Railroad Commission.
  • Interview with Barry Smitherman
  • The Houston Chronicle tackles the Lt. Governor’s race by…comparing Twitter statistics for Jerry Patterson and Dan Patrick. I feel dumber merely by having linked to that.
  • Texas Sparkle endorses Todd Staples for Lt. Governor.
  • Eric Opiela is running for Agricultural Commissioner. I sort of like his ad featuring a Prius-driving EPA official:

  • Malachi Boyuls is running for the railroad commission. You don’t see many Malachis in public office these days…

  • Democrat Mike Mjetland is considering running for Governor.
  • Texas Statewide Race Update for July 16, 2013

    Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

    Time permitting, I’m hoping to do regular updates on the 2014 statewide races in Texas the same way I updated the senate race. But with so many more offices and players, it’s going to take me some time to get up to speed.

  • Greg Abbott’s gubernatorial warchest has swollen to a formidable $23 million.
  • He also visited Longview, Wichita Falls, and Duncanville.
  • Todd Staples leads the money race for Lt. Governor, according to this fragment of the story that isn’t behind the Statesman paywall.

    Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, with $3 million in the bank, has the largest campaign treasury of the four Republican candidates for lieutenant governor, according to the latest fundraising statements, which were due Monday.

    Thanks to a $650,000 personal loan to his campaign, Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, the latest entrant in the race, edged past Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in money in the bank — $2.1 million to $1.73 million — even though Dewhurst raised $1.2 million compared with about $100,000 for Patrick. The fourth candidate, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, raised $417,000, bringing his treasury to $1.3 million. Patterson said he hopes to raise $3 million in the next six months to remain competitive, and Dewhurst has a personal fortune that he can tap

  • The Texas Tribune has more fundraising roundup news. Tidbits:
    • State Rep. Dan Branch hasn’t even declared his AG run, but already has $4 million on hand, including a $5,000 donation from George W. Bush.
    • Barry Smitherman has over $1 million cash on hand for his AG run.
    • State Sen. Ken Paxton (honestly, I was just guessing he would make an AG run) has more than $1.6 million cash on hand. He hasn’t declared yet.
    • George P. Bush reported $2 million raised and $2.6 million on hand for his Comptroller run.

    I’ll be digging into the financial reports for all the major candidates when I get a chance (don’t hold your breath this week).

  • Democratic abortion diva Wendy Davis raised just under a million dollars…for her state senate campaign. No word on a governor’s run.
  • Even in-the-tank liberal fossil Paul Burka says Davis has no chance to win the Texas Governor’s race.
  • A David L. Watts, Jr. is running for Land Commissioner. His platform so far seems to be that George P. Bush isn’t conservative enough.
  • Perry’s Decision and the State of Play for Texas Statewide Races in 2014

    Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

    With Rick Perry declining to run for reelection as Governor, we finally have the crystallizing event that will set the 2014 field. So here’s an early look at how the next year’s statewide races are shaping up in Texas:


    Attorney General Greg Abbott and his $18 million warchest is going to be the overwhelming favorite almost no matter who else jumps into the race; he has all Perry’s strength’s without Perry’s disadvantages. If David Dewhurst jumps into the Governor’s race, Abbott will still be the prohibitive favorite. Tom Pauken will be hard-pressed to match Glenn Addison’s 2012 senate race total of 1.6%. On the Democrats’ side, instant abortion celebrity Wendy Davis might be the favorite, but there’s no reason to expect Abbott won’t cream her by 20 points, and as a politician since 1999, there’s no indication she can self-fund. Neither of the Castro brothers strike me as stupid enough to want to tarnish their national office chances by losing a governor’s race. Beyond that it’s random state senators and reps (reportedly Rep. Mike Villarreal and Sen. Kirk Watson are considering runs), or retreads from the 2012 senate race.

    Lt. Governor

    His humiliating senate race defeat proved that David Dewhurst is vulnerable to a challenge from the right, but I remain unconvinced that any of the three currently declared candidates (Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, Agricultural Commissioner Todd Staples, and State Senator Dan Patrick) are the ones to do it. Dewhurst and Perry both moved up from the Land and Agricultural Commissioner positions (respectively), but neither ran against an incumbent, much less a well-heeled, entrenched one. Patrick tested the waters for the 2012 senate race, but found the groundswell for him non-existent. Moreover, Patrick’s candidacy appeals most to social conservatives, but after the abortion dustup, they would seem among the least likely to desert Dewhurst. Presumably U.S. Rep. Mike McCaul (the only man currently in Texas politics richer than Dewhurst) could defeat Dewhurst were he to get in, but so far he hasn’t made any moves to get into the race. In this, and all lower statewide races, whoever runs for the Democrats is whatever random candidates decided to skip the governor’s race.

    Attorney General

    With Abbott running for governor, this race is wide open. With Railroad Commissioner Barry Smitherman’s website already touting him as a potential candidate, his entry is pretty much a foregone conclusion. State Rep. Dan Branch is also said to be considering a run. Someone on Abbott’s staff could also get in, or a state legislator with a law degree who has been blessed by Texans for Lawsuit Reform. (Maybe Ken Paxton?)


    Incumbent Susan Combs has said she’s not running for reelection. Early word was she was eying the Lt. Governor’s race, but I don’t see her getting any traction there. Losing 2010 Tea Party/Ron Paulite gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina is rumored to be considering a run (and the previous link goes to a webpage for an exploratory committee for that race). State Senator Glenn Hegar is also said to be considering a run, as is state Ways and Means chairman Harvey Hilderbran. (State Senator Tommy Williams has preemptively bowed out.)

    Land Commissioner

    With incumbent Jerry Patterson gunning for Dewhurst’s job, George P. Bush, son of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, nephew of Bush43, and grandson of Bush 41, is considered a lock for the race. Though nothing about George P. Bush’s limited public appearances suggests he’s invulnerable, it’s doubtful he’ll draw a serious challenger this far down the ballot who’s willing to take on the Bush Machine’s renowned fundraising prowess.

    Agricultural Commissioner

    State Rep. Brandon Creighton is rumored to be interested in a run. Rep. Tim Kleinschmidt is passing on the race

    Railroad Commission

    When Smitherman runs for AG, his position will open up. State Rep. Stefani Carter will be running, along with “Dallas businessman Malachi Boyuls and geologist Becky Berger of Schulenburg.” Greg Parker, who made it into the runoff with Smitherman in 2012, is another possibility.

    And don’t forget all those wildcard Texas millionaires and billionaires who might suddenly decide to run for office…