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On missing KBH

I have four things to say about this.

Not Ted Cruz

Not Ted Cruz

Does anyone else miss Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison?

>We’re not sure how much difference one person could make in the toxic, chaotic, hyperpartisan atmosphere in Washington, but if we could choose just one it would be Hutchison, whose years of service in the Senate were marked by two things sorely lacking in her successor, Ted Cruz.

For one thing, Hutchison had an unswerving commitment to the highest and best interests of Texas at all times. This revealed itself in a thousand different ways. Hereabouts, we miss her advocacy for NASA, the Port of Houston and the energy industry. And we know she worked just as hard for Dallas, San Antonio and a hundred smaller Texas cities and towns.

And dare we say it? We miss her extraordinary understanding of the importance of reaching across the aisle when necessary. Neither sitting Texas senator has displayed that useful skill, and both the state and the Congress are the poorer for it.

One reason we particularly believe that Hutchison would make a difference in these hectic days is that if she had kept her seat, Cruz would not be in the Senate.

When we endorsed Ted Cruz in last November’s general election, we did so with many reservations and at least one specific recommendation – that he follow Hutchison’s example in his conduct as a senator.

Obviously, he has not done so. Cruz has been part of the problem in specific situations where Hutchison would have been part of the solution.

1. It’s nice to think that the Chron recognizes that its idiotic endorsement of Cruz was wrong. They sure are loathe to admit it, however much evidence there is that they blew it . I won’t be happy till they apologize for it. The problem wasn’t so much the endorsement itself as the reason for it. Their “recommendation” that Cruz be like KBH in the Senate was so laughably stupid you have to wonder if they’d been paying any attention at all to the Republican Senate primary. Whatever else you may say about Ted Cruz – and Lord knows, there’s plenty to say – he has been exactly who he has said he would be. I continue to be astonished that the Chron’s editorial board managed to delude itself into thinking otherwise, and that they continue to hold fast to their original opinion. Maybe it’s not an apology I want so much as for them to say exactly why they were so disastrously uninformed, and what they plan to do about it going forward.

2. While I certainly agree that KBH would not have led a push to shut down the government or breach the debt ceiling in a psychopathic and anti-Constitutional effort to nullify a perfectly legal law, I also don’t think she’d be anything but a loyal soldier for the opposition. She did serve in the Senate for four years under President Obama, and I challenge the Chron or anyone else to name a piece of legislation on which she broke ranks with her colleagues. It’s almost always the case when Republicans in DC have fought among themselves, the dispute isn’t about goals but about tactics. That would be the main difference between Senator KBH in 2013 and Senator Cruz.

3. The thing to watch for going forward is any sign that Texas’s Republican-backing business interests have recognized that Ted Cruz is part of the problem for them, too. So far, that doesn’t appear to be the case.

While we’re on the topic, we’d like to think our first choice to succeed Hutchison in the Senate, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, would have been more amenable to following Hutchison’s example than Cruz has been. But these days, we’re not so sure.

4. On Sunday, Peggy Fikac wrote that if David Dewhurst were Senator today, the government shutdown would not have happened. On Monday, David Dewhurst called for President Obama’s impeachment. Coincidence? I think not. Dewhurst will do anything to avoid getting Cruz’ed again. The mere suggestion that he might be slightly less insane than the voters he’s desperately trying to court is toxic to him. John Coby, Texpatriate, and Juanita have more.

UPDATE: What Alex Pareene says.

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