Campaign Chatter

Gov. Rick Perry ceremonially signs Senate Bill 18, a piece of eminent domain legislation, on May 23, 2011, beside state Sen. Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls, and Rep. Charlie Geren, R-River Oaks.
Gov. Rick Perry ceremonially signs Senate Bill 18, a piece of eminent domain legislation, on May 23, 2011, beside state Sen. Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls, and Rep. Charlie Geren, R-River Oaks.

Still watching statewides pursuing dreams of higher office? Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson endorsed Republican Tony Dale in the HD-136 open seat race in Williamson County.

Randy Weber, the Republican state rep from Pearland trying to become a U.S. Rep. from Pearland, picked up an endorsement from Perry. He's one of ten Republicans vying for the nomination in U.S. Rep. Ron Paul's district. Perry also endorsed Sen. Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls, who's seeking another term.

Kelly Hancock is on an endorsement streak, getting help from Perry, Attorney General Greg Abbott, Comptroller Susan Combs, Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples and the Texas Alliance for Life PAC. Hancock faces fellow Rep. Todd Smith in the SD-9 primary next month.

Marc Veasey, D-Fort Worth, got a boost in his race for congress from labor leader Linda Chavez-Thompson, who likes him in the 11-candidate Democratic primary in CD-33. She's on the Democratic National Committee and lost the race for lieutenant governor two years ago.

• The Arlington Police Association endorsed Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, in her SD-10 reelection bid.

• The newest Republican in the House, J.M. Lozano, picked up an endorsement from the Manufacturers PAC of Texas. They also endorsed Chris Paddie, challenger to Rep. Wayne Christian in HD-9, Marva Beck, R-Centerville, Chuck Hopson, R-Jacksonville, and Rep. Paul Workman, R-Austin.

Trent Ashby, the Lufkin school trustee challenging Beck in that HD-57 race, got the endorsement of the Texas Parent PAC.

• Paddie got a nod from the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, or CLEAT.

• The Texas Alliance for Life PAC endorsed Rep. Jim Pitts' reelection in HD-10, as did the Texas Department of Public Safety Officers Association. DPSOA and CLEAT were among several law enforcement groups that announced their support this week for Rep. Larry Taylor's Senate bid. The Friendswood Republican also got the Texas Municipal Police Association, the Houston Police Officers Union and the Texas State Association of Firefighters.

• TEXPAC, the political arm of the Texas Medical Association, endorsed former Rep. Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie, in the open HD-101 race. So did the Texas State Teachers Association.

Ron Simmons says he mustered a majority (six) of Carrollton city council members to endorse him in the HD-65 race in Denton County. That's the seat where Burt Solomons, R-Carrollton, decided not to seek another term.

Trent McKnight picked up the support of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers PAC in HD-68, where Rick Hardcastle, R-Vernon, decided not to run again. That same PAC endorsed Rep. Lance Gooden, R-Terrell, in HD-4, and Rep. Bryan Hughes, R-Mineola, in HD-5. In the statewide race for Texas Railroad Commission, the PAC likes Warren Chisum, R-Pampa.

• Hughes got a little help from above; Sen. Kevin Eltife, R-Tyler, endorsed him.

Dan Neil, who lost a very close race to Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, in 2010, endorsed her new opponent, Robert Thomas, in this year's HD-48 race.

• The Texas Hospital Association PAC is throwing in with McAllen Democrat Bobby Guerra in HD-41 and with former Rep. Tommy Merritt, who's in a Republican primary rematch with Rep. David Simpson in HD-7. Both candidates are from Longview. That PAC endorsed Reps. Harvey Hilderbran, R-Kerrville, Ralph Sheffield, R-Temple, and Jim Murphy, R-Houston, for reelection.

• Texans for Lawsuit Reform endorsed Reps. Byron Cook, R-Corsicana, in HD-8, and Ralph Sheffield, R-Temple, in HD-55.

David Barton, president of WallBuilders and a former vice chairman of the state GOP, is hosting a rally for Matt Beebe over the weekend; Beebe is running against House Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio. Straus got an endorsement from a fellow House member, Lyle Larson, who used to be that area's county commissioner.

• Dr. Steve Nguyen, R-Irving, got an endorsement from former pro football player Dat Nguyen in the crowded open seat race in HD-115.