Skip to comments.Texas voters stick a fork in Ann Richards and her liberal pals
Posted on 11/07/2002 10:24:39 AM PST by The South Texan
Roddy Stinson: Texas voters stick a fork in Ann Richards and her liberal pals
Web Posted : 11/07/2002 12:00 AM
"You can stick a fork in George Bush because he's done." Ann Richards, speaking at a Houston rally for Democratic presidential candidate Bill Clinton on Oct. 28, 1992 "Stick a fork in Ann Richards and her liberal sidekicks because they are cooked." The Texas electorate, sending a message to the Texas Democratic Party on Nov. 5, 2002
As late as 6:45 Tuesday night, Richards, a former one-term Texas governor, was telling CNN's Larry King:
"We are going to have an unprecedented turnout in Texas. ... Tony Sanchez could win. But it's harder for him than it is, say, for Ron Kirk or John Sharp, who I think will be the lieutenant governor. And Kirk Watson, who's a smart young man, the mayor of Austin, will become the attorney general."
Actually, Watson the supereminent darling of Democratic liberals hasn't been mayor of Austin since the fall of 2001 when he resigned his mayoral post to run for attorney general.
But that minor Richards goof pales when compared to her bold and remarkably incorrect last-minute prediction of a virtual sweep of the state's major elected offices by Texas Democrats.
The proof of her predictive blunder is in the numbers.
As this is edited early Wednesday evening ...
John Cornyn, 55%; Ron Kirk 43%
Rick Perry, 58%; Tony Sanchez, 40%
David Dewhurst, 52%; John Sharp, 46%
Greg Abbott, 57%; Kirk Watson, 41%
The magnitude of the Democratic defeat approaches breathtaking.
In 1998, in the lieutenant governor's race, Sharp, the Texas Democratic Party's brightest star, was defeated by Perry, a popular, two-term agriculture commissioner, by only 2 percentage points.
Four years later, Sharp the Democrats' most electable candidate and the favorite politico of Texas pundits lost by 6 percentage points to Dewhurst, a little-known and not particularly popular land commissioner, who had one campaign theme: "John Sharp is an out-of-step, tax-and-spend LIBERAL."
True or not, the "liberal" tag stuck, and that was sufficient reason for voters to knock out the Democrats' best candidate.
But Sharp's fall was a soft landing compared to the crash of Kirk Watson, the only unabashed liberal in a top position on the Democratic ticket.
Last February, Texas Monthly pundit Paul Burka predicted that during the 2002 campaign Greg Abbott would describe Watson with "just four words: liberal Austin trial lawyer" ... and Watson would counter "by trying to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear by asking, 'Who do you want fighting for you?'"
Texas voters provided a resounding answer to that question on Tuesday when they buried liberal Watson under a landslide of Abbott votes.
Which leads to an obvious conclusion:
Ann Richards must not have cleaned her crystal ball before palavering with Larry King Tuesday night.
Not that her way-wrong predictions will bother King or CNN's slanted-news managers.
As long as Richards is ambulatory and ready, willing and eager to put a damper on Bush Republicans, she will find a place in the lights, cameras and interview chairs of TV network big shots.
In response, Texas voters will just continue to do what they do best: watch quietly, listen politely, smile knowingly and flock to the polls to baste Miz Ann and her political pals.
To contact Roddy Stinson, call (210) 250-3155 or e-mail email@example.com. His column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
We just bide our time and then speak out LOUDLY at the voting booth. They didn't see it coming.
All that can be said about Republican dominance in Washington can be said and doubled concerning Austin. The GOP holds every statewide office, controls every branch of government and, by way of explanation, commands a sizable majority among Texans willing to bestir themselves enough to go to the polls.
For the first time in 130 years, Republicans control both the Texas Senate, 19-12, and the House, winning at least 83 seats in the 150-member lower chamber. Democratic Rep. Pete Laney has a chance to be re-elected House speaker in January, but insiders are starting to bet on Republican Rep. Tom Craddick of Midland.
Lt. Gov.-elect David Dewhurst, who has no experience in the Legislature but could wield more influence there than the governor, will preside over the Senate.
Gov. Rick Perry, in claiming victory for himself and other Republican officeholders, said that now the real work must begin. He pledged that his administration would promote business and jobs, control state spending and home insurance rates, improve education and reduce the dropout rate. The Texas Legislature has a long tradition of working in bipartisan fashion to reward well-funded interests. Fulfilling Perry's agenda will require unusual energy and cooperation aimed at advancing the general welfare. Should they do so, legislators can expect little but gratitude, and probably not even that.
Many legislators, particularly the rookies, made this job more difficult by promising the voters reduced taxes and increased spending for schools, highways, flood control, health services and whatever else they were clamoring for. Now legislators must disabuse their constituents of these fantasies and acquaint them with the unbendable rules of arithmetic.
The perfect tag for Watson and others of his ilk is
"Too liberal for Texas!"
Note that, of Denton County voters, a remarkable 77% voted straight GOP!
If CNN wants to know why Fox is beating them in the ratings, here's one reason -- has-been guests like Ann Richards!
And, she has since traded the spoon in for a flesh-colored d*#do that reeks of alcohol! Dont go away mad Ann, just go away. Be happy that you are still and will forever be Queen of the Austin Lesbians who now number in the tens of thousands.
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