A perfect storm

Lots of pundits have been writing about how the multiple candidate field has guaranteed Rick Perry's victory.

I don't really agree. Seems to me like this is the perfect storm of something that could beat Perry. Of course, it's still not going to happen, but, y'know...

In a two candidate race, there'd have been only one candidate attacking Perry. Instead of the 3 candidates getting headlines all summer blasting Perry, it would've simply been one. That means that Perry's personal and job approval numbers would be higher.

That's not to say there isn't a strong anti-Perry vote out there. Of course there is. But some folks seem to think that most everyone who doesn't vote for Perry in this 5 person race would've voted for Perry's opponent if this were only a two candidate race. I doubt it. Highly. Perry and his team are excellent at drawing contrasts. They'd have spent all summer defining the Democrat.

So actually, I think this is the Democrats' best chance. They've had the arrows of Kinky Friedman and Carole Strayhorn aimed at Perry for over a year, while Bell has managed to skate through largely unmarred until now. Bell may be unknown but he hasn't been defined until recently, and that's pretty much the best any Democrat can ask for in this state right now.

UPDATE: Welcome Chron.com Opinion readers, and welcome Yahoo AP readers. Click here for the main page of the blog. This blog started out covering just the gubernatorial race here in Texas, but know covers Texas politics at large.

Posted by Evan @ 10/31/06 09:16 AM


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Sheeple of Texas, WAKE UP!!
Abandon the 2 party system which has screwed up this state.
Fix the corruptness - VOTE KINKY. the only thing that will get screwed up is the current corrupt poltical system.

Posted by Kent Taylor @ 10/31/06 11:35 PM

I'll be voting for Kinky Friedman: Child Chess Prodigy, Peace Corp Veteran, Musician, Caretaker for Echo Hill Children's Camp, accomplished Author, and Benefactor for the Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch. Its time the media gave him some credit where credit is due.

In the spirit of our founding fathers, Kinky is easily the best candidate- the only one who isn't a career politician. He's a smart, honest man- exactly the governor that Texas needs. Look at all the bumper stickers and yard signs. These people want change, and they'll be voting Kinky too.

Posted by GoodbyeGoodhair @ 11/01/06 09:33 AM

Dear Editor:

Should Independent Kinky Friedman drop from the Governor’s race?
If he did, would it help Democrat Bell? The answer is not only “No”, but “Hell, no!”

Why is voter apathy/frustration so high and voter turn-out so low?
Why have folks, who’ve not ventured to the polls in so long they can’t remember; now saying they will vote? For them, the 2-party system is truly broken.
They’re lining up behind Kinky because he’s talking issues, offering an alternative to politics as usual. He’s taking a stand against what has let us all down! If Kinky left the race, it would do Bell no good – Bell simply can’t win. Democraps offer political placebo. Friedman offers choice, change!
Kinky supporters want Kinky. If they can’t have him, the majority of these would-be-voters, will return to what they were doing; forget about voting. They’ll again declare, “It doesn’t matter.” Who could argue with them? For them, “Friedman’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose”.
The 2-party system has become a huge ‘us & them’ contest - voters don’t win. Read the Texas Republican Party website for your daily dose of hateful rhetoric, fear peddling, distortion, substance-less text. In their recent email, Perry’s declared the clear winner of the debate as follows:
“Governor Perry was the clear winner in a 4-way debate tonight. To sum it up: Friedman didn't know the amount of time a person can be on welfare, Bell wasn't sure of the year of the Battle of the Alamo, and Strayhorn didn't know the name of the president-elect of Mexico”.
To sum it up? Sum what up? Is that all Republicrooks can do to show Perry the winner and ‘our man’? Bless their hearts. Summing it up adds up to ZERO – proof from his own camp he has nothing to offer – a mere empty, plastic fantastic Ken doll. The song “You’re so Vain” wasn’t written for Perry, but if the shoe fits…. And is he really running for governor? Or is it vice president or university chancellor?
Friedman offers an alternative to the complacency of politics as usual for which voters have become so disgusted. The arrogant career politicians have forgotten for whom they work – US, the people of Texas! So, who has the best chance to beat Perry? Kinky Friedman!
Don’t panic and bail from what you know in your heart is the best shot we have to declare independence. Send a message to the Texas legislature that if they don’t clean things up, we will vote them out of office, too!
Take Texas back!

Posted by Tonya Benson @ 11/01/06 01:42 PM

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