But We Were Friends!

In politics, friendship apparently lasts through only one political cycle. Just ask Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. Many organizations that previously supported both her and Gov. Rick Perry have put their weight behind Perry's re-election bid instead of her challenge. The Texas Farm Bureau sits as the sole trade group cheerleading for the Hutchison campaign — while Perry counts 50 organizations and associations supporting him.

Full Story 

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Roll your own political videos ... interactive travel maps of your federal and state legislators ... scary movies, to keep the kids out of the border's scary drug wars ... puttting dropouts back in class ... rates squeezing families out of home health care ... how many lobby and trade associations do teachers in Texas need? ... enjoying the silence before an expected two-month siege of political advertising ... the dean of Texas political writers gets shut out of the gubernatorial debates ... and we have an interactive database of the state's best and worst public schools. The best of our best for a short news week, from December 19 to 26, 2009.

Full Story 

TribBlog: Hunger Season

More than 2.5 million Texas students are enrolled in the School Lunch Program, but just a fraction of those participate in the federally funded Summer Food Program, according to a report the Center for Public Policy Priorities released toay.

Full Story 
 Marjorie Cotera/Daemmrich Photography

The Polling Center: KBH in the (Tumble) Weeds in Lubbock County

Not many local polls have been made public, but this one confirms the rumor mill: One, Rick Perry’s lead in conservative areas of the state is a few points above what the UT/Trib poll found statewide. And, two, the impression that, as of now, the Kay Bailey Hutchison campaign is floundering if it's really trying to peel conservative voters away from Perry in significant numbers.

Full Story 
 Bob Daemmrich, Todd Wiseman

The Rich are Different

When political consultants take on wealthy candidates, does that mean they can milk them and their campaigns for all they’re worth? Are they simply trying to help good people get elected? Or both?

Full Story 

Guest Column: Rational Numbers

In every major urban and suburban Texas county, where the vast majority of Texans cast their ballots, the Democratic vote share increased betweeen 2004 and 2008. Montgomery County was the single exception. In Denton, Collin, Fort Bend, and Williamson Counties — four of the five most populous traditionally Republican suburban counties — the Democratic vote rose.

Full Story