Friday, February 29, 2008

How Craddick Was My Olivo?

Just as in the novel How Green Was My Valley, where the main protagonist, Huw (Hugh) Morgan is the smarter brother who wants to rise above his condition, Ron Reynolds is the smarter candidate who wants to rise above Texas House Speaker Tom Craddick’s machine politics.

Early on, after Ron Reynolds made his announcement that he was going to run for his party’s nomination for State Representative for Texas House District 27, before his opponent, Dora Olivo, indicated her desire to run for another term, Reynolds received a telephone call from Texas House leadership probing the possibilities of his support for a 4th Tom Craddick Speaker’s term for the 81st Legislature.

At that time, Reynolds stated categorically to his caller that he was opposed to the dictatorial tactics of Tom Craddick and would oppose his candidacy for Speaker.

Tom Craddick dearly wants to be speaker of the Texas House for another term. He cherishes the power, the prestige and the perquisites that go with the job. Not to mention the fact that he can order money thrown at or withdrawn from anyone he wants.

And because of this, and the fact that Craddick is running out of friends in his own party, and may lose some allies next week from primary challenges within the party that opposes him, Tom Craddick is looking for some new friends.

Some new Craddick D’s.

And where better to look for new friends and allies than in a primary where a progressive Democrat has mounted strong opposition against a moderate Democratic incumbent? A Democratic incumbent whose campaign contributions have lagged behind her upstart opponent’s war chest?

We have been talking about these campaign contributions for awhile. In this piece, I made some noise about Olivo’s acceptance of a $1000 contribution from one of Tom Craddick’s favorite PACs whose disbursements he is said to control: HillCo PAC. This is a very exclusive club of Craddick’s most loyal friends. The club includes, but is not limited to the following Republican State Representatives: Phil King, Betty Brown, John Davis, Mike Jackson and Mike Krusee.

Nice bunch of bedfellows, don’t you think?

Reference to this funding was also made in this piece which reproduced a Ron Reynolds flyer that was circulated in order to beat back a smear campaign that had been mounted against him by the Olivo people.

I have also been watching contributions from the Texas JOBS PAC, a Craddick-run political action committee that got a huge cash infusion from Tom Craddick’s campaign early this year. The next day the PAC made huge cash contributions to several state representatives, all of them former supporters. Only Dawnna Dukes, a Craddick D who is fighting a primary challenge in her district returned the $50,000 wad of cash.

And now, to Dora Olivo, a check for $2,500.00.

Perhaps to keep things below the radar, Texas JOBS PAC made a very recent (recent as in February 26th recent) contribution to State Rep. Dora Olivo’s campaign fund, a not so insignificant $2,500 donation. One wonders why this entry was placed in the TEC campaign report form with the PAC’s full name (Texas Builds Jobs & Opportunity For A Secure Future PAC INC), to confuse and befuddle people?

To hide something?

No, what we have here is an incipient Craddick D. Vince at Capitol Annex, who has written, in the past, some uncomplimentary words about Ron Reynolds, is also somewhat alarmed at these events. He asks the question “So, what is the deal? Is Craddick trying to buy her love (and her vote)…”?

My question is rather, since these contributions have not been turned away by Olivo, when did Dora Olivo start becoming a Craddick D?

And if you have not voted yet, it’s time to get off the dime and vote for the man who will not be Tom Craddick’s pawn in the next session.

Ron Reynolds.

And, oh yeah, vote for Barack Obama, too.


Anonymous said...

Is that like propagandist, like you half?

"where the main protagonist", just change a few letters, you change everything else, so why not?

Hal said...

So if it starts with a "p" and ends with a "t" the words all seem alike to you Anon?

What about "illiterate" and "idiot"?

And before you check my spelling, Anon, check your Webster's.

Ted said...

(1) Your use of digits right of the decimal for the amount of the Texas JOBS PAC contribution could be perceived as inflammatory. Since other figures in the article were noted only in dollars, using cents in this case makes the figure appear far larger than it really is. I'm sure you did not intend to convey any misimpression and suggest you revise your article.

(2) Your article contains a clear suggestion that, if re-elected, Rep. Dora Olivo may align herself with Speaker Tom Craddick. I've followed Olivo's work in the Texas House. She votes consistently with the majority of Democrats in the House, including against Craddick in the speaker "test vote" at the start of the 80th session. Olivo goes further, often voting with a smaller bloc of the most liberal House members. She is a strong and consistent supporter of high-quality public education and public services for all Texans, regardless of income. Any suggestion that Olivo would support Craddick's agenda in a future session because of a campaign contribution is not only highly speculative, but counterfactual.

Hal said...

It's only inflamatory if you do not understand United States currency. Most people know that the two digits to the right of a decimal in currency denotes tenths and hundredths of a dollar.

It should inflame voters enough that their DEMOCRATIC state rep is taking money from a Republican PAC whose chief, if only, backer is Tom Craddick.

Enough on this. Let the voters decide now. If they like what Dora Olivo is doing for them, then they will return her to office. Ask yourselves though, why does Tom Craddick support Dora Olivo and not Ron Reynolds.