Monday, May 28, 2007

Nick Sticks With TX-22

W. Gardner Selby of the Austin American-Statesman was first to report that Congressman Nick Lampson (D - Stafford) will not seek the Democratic nomination for US Senate, to run against Texas Senator John Cornyn in November 2008.

That is good news for the Democrats of CD-22. Nick’s race was a hard-fought one – an uphill battle in a Republican-leaning district. We needed him to stay. Sometimes, more often than not, he votes with his base.

Remarks by Nick’s political consultant, Mustafa Tameez, that “It sounds goofy, but he feels like he made a commitment to the people of Congressional District 22” are not “goofy” in the least. Many of us felt betrayed. Many of us felt like a few rungs on a ladder that were used and abused.

So I will take those words for what they are, an acknowledgement of an unspoken agreement.

But you know, there is always something with me. Whenever I see or hear about some "about face", I get a little suspicious.

And when I get suspicious, I do as “Deep Throat” (aka Mark Felt) instructed in the movie All the President’s Men. I follow the money.

It is going to take $12 million to run a campaign against John Cornyn – or really, any Republican with statewide name recognition if Cornyn does as is rumored, and takes the place of discredited Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez.

What I am guessing is that Nick took a long and hard look at the available resources, and saw that one of them was a possible primary opponent, Austin lawyer and really rich guy, Mikal Watts. Watts, they say, is going to fund his own campaign for US Senate.

Nick also had a name recognition problem. He got lots of press locally, and he might be remembered as the guy who chased Tom DeLay to Virginia, but the public is fickle and has the long-term memory of a ninth grader.

That is not to say that Mikal Watts is a well-known personality in these parts. I have only recently made myself passingly aware of whom this guy is. The only thing I really wonder about that guy is why he can’t spell his first name correctly. Well, then there's the whole Iraq thing. What's he think about bringing our troops home?

Anyway, this is the long way around to this: good to hear you’re not leaving, Nick. Now relax and let some of us carry some water for you.

7 comments:

Greg said...

the public is fickle and has the long-term memory of a ninth grader

It is not clear to me why you are attacking the electorate of CD22 in this manner. Could you please expand on your disdain for the district's voters?

Anti-Corruption Republican
f.k.a. Greg in TX22

Hal said...

No attack necessary. The electorate of CD22 laboriously voted (mis-spelling her name so often it is not even fun anymore to recount) for a half-bubble off dermatologist with an amazingly pedant campaign song, sung to the "Beer Barrel Polka". To the tune of 40 percent.

I am not the one to coin the phrase but I love it ever so much. Fort Bend voters are so dim that they compare to a 15 watt bulb buried under two feet of soil.

Nick's army of 1600 could reach a bare 50.3% majority against a certifiable nutcase. That either speaks volumes about the campaign of Nick Lampson, or about the political make-up of "the fighting 22nd".

Shelley Sekula Gibbs is a CD-22 embarrassment bar none. We in Fort Bend County keep having to point out that she is from Clear Lake, Harris County. Not of us. We have enough to live down with lawsuit stricken Tom DeLay. Shelley Schulla Gibbons is too much for us to bear.

Greg. I salute you. As a Republican and as one who is anti-corruption, you have a job on your hands. Particularly because "Anti-corruption Republican" is an oxymoron.

Montag said...

greg, let's remember that Fort Bend County's former Elections Commissioner said that we had to go to electronic voting because the voters were TOO STUPID to figure out how to color in the ovals on the old optical scan ballots that we'd been using for 20 freakin' years! To hear him tell it, half the ballots had to be counted by hand to figure out the intent of the voter.

Anonymous said...

How confident should I be that Mr. Lampson will hold on to this seat against whoever the Republicans nomiate? I guess the Republicans will choose between Howard, Gibbs, Wallace, Hrbecek, Bettencourt, others?

Hal said...

Bob Talton:
http://taltonforcongress.com

Bettencourt is wavering on running.

Rove is going to spend a lot of money to unseat Lampson, so it is not by any stretch of the imagination that who gets on the primary ballot will have to pass a DC beltway litmus test.

Greg said...

First of all, it seems that you attack anyone who does not hew to your political preference. Personally, I don't find that argument very persuasive.

Secondly, I am quite proud of the voters in CD22. A significantly large number of them put principle over party, resulting in Tom DeLay's withdrawal.

That Rep. Lampson won by a 50-40 margin augurs very poorly for Lampson. If the Republicans had a candidate other than Tom DeLay on the ballot in 2006, I have no doubt the district would be represented by a Republican today. The fact that some 40% of the voters (myself included) went to the trouble of attempting to write out in some fashion SSG's name is quite remarkable.

As long as the Republicans nominate someone without ethical baggage, Lampson is a loser in 2008. If that is the case, reliable Republican voters like me can come home. Unfortunately, given the recent behavior of the local Republican establishment, accepting bribes isn't necessarily a disqualifier for nomination to public office.

"Anti-Corruption Republican" is not an oxymoron. There is a battle for control of the party, and the anti-corruption wing is certainly a minority. I am hopeful that anti-corruption wing of the GOP can wrest control of the Party. If not, it has certainly flexed its muscle enough to show the local party that it must be responsive to this segment (approximately 1/3) of the Republican electorate. I'd like to think that my voting behavior and that of all of the anti-corruption wing of the Republican Party is quite rational.

Anti-Corruption Republican
f.k.a Greg in TX22

Hal said...

First of all, it seems that you attack anyone who does not hew to your political preference.

I didn't invent the ploy. Being mean and nasty is something we Democrats have had to learn. I've long written off Republicans as persuadable.

Secondly, I am quite proud of the voters in CD22. A significantly large number of them put principle over party, resulting in Tom DeLay's withdrawal.

38%? You call that significant? And Mike Fjetland was a RINO. Dems voted for him. So call it 34%. The only thing significant about that number is that DeLay wanted to win big. But in the end, it wasn't his less than landslide victory that caused him to leave, it was his ethics problems and indictments. You're not telling me that if he had stayed in the race that you would have voted for Nick Lampson, are you?

As long as the Republicans nominate someone without ethical baggage, Lampson is a loser in 2008.

And therein lies the rub. Getting me back to my original theme: "Anti-corruption Republican"
is an oxymoron.