“It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into”

Jonathan Swift
"The Democrats have moved to the right, and the right has moved into a mental hospital." - Bill Maher
"The city is crowded my friends are away and I'm on my own
It's too hot to handle so I gotta get up and go

It's a cruel ... cruel summer"

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Texas In Play?

It says here that Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison may resign from her Senate seat before the end of the year. The reasoning, according to "Big bad" John Cornyn, would be that she wants to run for governor. Presumably, she finds having to vote in the Senate an inconvenience to her campaign. According to Cornyn, the timing of her resignation would be to enable Gov. Perry to appoint her replacement and give that Republican a better chance at election in 2010. But the article from Politico also points out that Democratic Mayor Bill White of Houston has already banked over $2 million in his run for that seat, which certainly makes him a viable contender. White has carefully crafted his career, and has a moderate "get-stuff-done" resume as Houston mayor. With the state's Republicans continuing their rightward trend, it may finally be time for a Democrat to be elected statewide.

And the possibility of a Perry appointment raises all sorts of possibilities. Perry would probably appoint another rabid right-winger as a supplication to his own base, giving him a better chance to defeat Hutchison in the primary. But he already has a leg up in that respect, so if he really wants to hold the Senate seat, he might go with someone more in Hutchison's camp. Or, if Perry is truly worried about Hutchison defeating him, he could appoint himself. Maybe that's what Hutchison is angling for. In any event, it's really not a mystery why Hutchison wants to be governor. She knows that if she has any hope of being elected president, the route lies through the governorship. This is the opposite of Florida Gov. Charlie Christ's rationale, because he knows he has made himself persona non grata with the right wing, so likely has no open route to the presidency from his current position, but is so popular in Florida that he can be elected in perpetuity to the U.S. Senate.