It’s hard to miss: The dash for the telephones; the rush to fill a sudden vacuum; the mad scramble. Amazing, yet predictable. Electoral competition. Democracy. Not necessarily every time there’s an election, but at least every time there’s an open seat. Every time an entrenched incumbent finally decides to step down, then we get some action. As we are getting action now in Texas.
A few weeks back Texas Senator Phil Gramm announced that he would not run for reelection next year. After a moment of stunned silence, the scramble for his seat has begun … and also the scramble for other statewide seats, as folks revise their bets and their ambitions in response to a radically altered political landscape.
The Texas attorney general, John Cornyn, is among those who have announced plans to run for Senate. Two former senatorial candidates and the Dallas mayor are also thinking about throwing their hats in the ring. State land commissioner David Dewhurst had planned to run for lieutenant governor but then decided to run for senator, until John Cornyn entered the race. Now Dewhurst is running for lieutenant governor again. So former Supreme Court Justice Greg Abbott, who had been thinking about running for lieutenant governor, is now planning to run for attorney general. Of course, the governor’s seat is wide open too, since the guy who used to be the popular governor, George Bush, recently became President.
Gosh, it’s so confusing. People are running for this, for that, for the other. It’s like you’ve got to read the paper now before you even enter the voting booth. Real democracy kind of cool when you think about it!
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.