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TribBlog: Show Me Proof, Dunnam Tells Perry

State Rep. Jim Dunnam, D-Waco, wants proof that Gov. Rick Perry's $9,000-per-month rental property was recommended by state legislators and DPS officials.

The iconic Texas Governor's Mansion was nearly demolished by fire in June 2008 after an arsonist hurled a Molotov cocktail at the front door.

State Rep. Jim Dunnam, D-Waco, is “respectfully” asking Gov. Rick Perry for proof that the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Legislature had a hand in putting up the governor and his wife in a $9,000-a-month rental property.

The request stems from a recent interview with San Antonio’s KENS 5 in which Perry said the site was chosen for security reasons and encouraged by DPS and members of the Lege. 

“We are going to live wherever the Legislature and the Department of Pubic Safety direct us to live,” Perry told reporter Jeff Vaughn. The exchange begins about four minutes into the interview.

In a letter dated today, Dunnam says that because he has “no recollection of participating in the discussion,” he would like Perry to furnish proof of “legislative and/or DPS approval” of the governor’s heated pool, full-time chef, housekeeper, “Neiman Marcus window dressings, the cost of ‘emergency repair’ for [his] filtered ice machine and [his] two-year subscription to Food and Wine Magazine.”

Dunnam also asks for the names of legislators and DPS officials who authorized the expenses. He adds that he would appreciate Perry’s support for a bill Dunnam intends to pre-file that would limit “the amount of taxpayer dollars available to the Texas governor to cover living expenses.”

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