The gubernatorial campaign, in a nutshell.
Gov. Rick Perry delivered a patriotic speech to the Texas Farm Bureau on Thursday, but gave short shrift to the property rights issue that caused a split between him and one of the state’s largest agricultural organizations.
Democratic challenger Bill White earlier delivered what sounded like a point-by-point legal argument for why the Farm Bureau should turn its back on Perry. Topping the list was the governor’s 2007 veto of a bill to limit land condemnations through eminent domain, a bill the Farm Bureau had lobbied to pass.
Perry’s speech gave the appearance of indifference to Farm Bureau anger, and his lack of contrition led some in the Republican-leaning audience to say they will consider voting for Democrat White this fall.
“Rick Perry gave a very patriotic speech. He didn’t address our issues, and we have issues with him,” said Mike Thompson, a Mount Pleasant poultry producer. “I’ll tell you what I like about Bill White. He shot straight.”
Perry is desperate to talk about anything but his record – hey, if you had his record, you’d be the same way – and he hopes no one will notice. He also refuses to admit the possibility that he might have done something unwise, even to an audience that would have loved to forgive him for it. White can and will speak intelligently on any subject, and if people give him a listen, they’ll come away impressed. Whether or not you think he needs to have a “big idea”, you know he’s got what it takes. The Trib has more.