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T-Squared: Little White Lie

In which I forgive the mayor of Houston for me last Friday.

Dear Bill,

In fact, that secession crack was funnier the second time. What I didn't understand was, you were only days away from seceding from the Senate race — although God knows I tried to get to you to tell me something, anything, when I interviewed you last Friday before a crowd at the LBJ School. I figured that on the fifteenth or sixteenth try, you might drop your guard and admit what you were really thinking: that this waiting around for Kay stuff was for the birds, and that since the polls and the buzz are telling you and me and everyone else that Rick Perry is the odds-on favorite to be the Republican nominee, the prospect of a race for governor was getting more attractive by the day. It was always a closely held belief among your fellow Democrats that "he," in shorthand, was a less formidable foe in the fall that "she" — but there was no guarantee that whoever got in the Democratic race would be running against "him," which is why Kirk Watson, among other speculated-about Dems, declined to get in. There's still no guarantee, but the clouds over Team KBH headquarters have darkened somewhat since Terry Sullivan slammed the UT/Texas Tribune poll's finding that Hutchison trailed Perry by a dozen points. I forgive you, Terry, for taking to R.G.'s blog to attack what you had to know (and didn't need Rasmussen to confirm) was an accurate reading of the state of the race; that's just part of the game. As is fibbing about your intentions when you're not ready to out yourself as a candidate, even if the Magic 8 Ball says that all signs point to yes. So I forgive you, Mr. Mayor, for denying so strenuously, if not convincingly or conclusively, what turns out to have been true. Or for refusing to take the bait when I asked if you wanted to say a few words about the announced Democratic candidates for governor. In retrospect, "eat my dust" would have done just fine.

May I suggest that you owe me one?

Journalistically yours,

Evan Smith

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