Monday, July 12, 2010

White Campaign Earns “Pants on Fire” Award from Politifact

Well I warned about it here. The Bill White for Texas campaign made a serious mistake, I think, when they tried to argue that Rick Perry was shortchanging Texans by working only 7 hours a week in the first half of the year.

First, given that what the White Campaign was saying was entirely true, that Rick Perry only works at being governor for 7 hours a week, that’s not necessarily a bad thing if you are a Democrat.

Assuming a 40-hour work week, that’s 33 hours per week that Rick Perry is not working to drag Texas further and further down the hole that he and his party have dug for the state.

The more time Rick Perry spends reading his taxpayer-bought and paid for “Food and Wine” magazine, the less time he has to devote to further ruining the Texas system of public education. The more time that he spends tasting Merlot and eating spinach quiche, the less time he will spend devising ways to cut spending in essential services in order to knock down the looming $18 billion state budget shortfall.

But no, they kept it up and this was too much for the people at Politifact.

They knew better.

They knew what every teacher in Texas knows, that the salaries of state employees is online thanks to the Texas Tribune. You can go here and see who are the top-salaried people on the state payroll and Rick Perry doesn’t even make it in the top 25.

The top five people in Texas who bring home the biggest state payroll paychecks are as follows:
Mack Brown - $5.1 million per year
Richard Barnes – $2.15 million per year
Michael Sherman – $1.7 million per year
Thomas Tuberville – $1.5 million per year
Gail Goestenkoers - $1.04 million per year
Even Goestenkoers makes, on an hourly basis (40 hours times 52 weeks), more than the White campaign projects that Rick Perry makes.

Oh. Who are these five top payees?

Coaches. All of them are coaches. Hey, what the heck did you expect, anyway? This is Texas where they invented the term “Friday Night Lights.”

Indeed, you have to click down to the 11th page (at 25 names per page) in the Texas Tribune’s State Employee salary list before you come across the name Rick Perry.


No problem. It was a nice try, just doomed to failure given those irritating things known as facts.

Really, to me, in running a campaign against Rick Perry there is such a target-rich environment that it is actually ill-advised to go out and gin up this criticism, especially when what Perry is being criticized for, not working for Texas, is actually a good thing.

No comments: