Thursday, May 18, 2006

the rick and carole show

With the news that Carole Keeton Strayhorn and Kinky Friedman will join the other candidates (challenging Democrat Chris Bell, incumbent Republican Rick Perry, and potential Libertarian James Werner) on the ballot, it looks like 2006 will be an interesting election year. (According to the Secretary of State, Green Party candidate Jerry Larson has not obtained access to the ballot but he may choose to run as an independent backed by the Green Party.) Five people vying for the same gubernatorial position... four of them traditionally conservative? This can only mean good things for Democrat Chris Bell. Right?

Chris Bell has called for an end to "the Rick and Carole show." We all understand what he means... the antics are getting a little old. The fact that Strayhorn and Friedman are even challenging Rick Perry show that there is some discontentment within the Republican establishment. Instead of wasting time on the independents, though, voters really need to focus on researching their Democratic candidate. The only way to really affect change in Texas would be to elect a Democrat. In the end, voting for one of the independents in this race would be a vote for the status quo. Friedman and Strayhorn are still conservative: Friedman's just a different kind of conservative and Strayhorn feels Perry's not conservative enough.

Something Bell really needs to court is the college vote. Unfortunately for the Democrats, Friedman has fired up young people in Texas. Friedman's MySpace account has been "friended" by nearly 15,000 MySpace users and boasts that Kinky Friedman is different from the establishment Republicans and Democrats. He has collected signatures for his ballot petition at college campuses across the state. To add to the confusion, the Dixie Chicks, a country music group from Texas that has spoken out against President Bush and Iraq, endorsed Friedman for governor. Of course, the diehard college-age Democrats will vote for Chris Bell, but as it stands many young voters have been duped by the Friedman campaign. Bell needs to work like mad to win them back.

Bell also needs to continue his constant criticism of Governor Perry. Currently, those voters that have become disenfranchised with a governor they likely voted for will be won over by the fiery Strayhorn. As PinkDome reported a while back, Bell's remarks go unnoticed when they are coupled with the same criticisms from Strayhorn. Bell needs to distance himself from both Perry and Strayhorn while maintaining a stream of attacks against the sitting governor that inform the public of the wrongdoings of the Perry administration.

Three conservative candidates (two reformed Republicans and a Libertarian) should spell success for Bell's campaign if he plays his cards right; however, he cannot sit back and hope that the conservative vote is split in three parts. He must actively campaign and court all Texas voters or we'll end up with another four years of "the Rick and Carole show."


Kinky is Awesome said...

You can't write off Kinky. He spoke with Ruminator Magazine about his thoughts on Bush's foreign policy:

Ruminator: So does this idea of the honorable cowboy have anything to do with why you threw your support behind President Bush in this last election? You did, didn’t you?

Kinky: Yes. I did in this last election, but I didn’t vote for him the first time....I was not for Bush that time. Since then, though, we’ve become friends. And that’s what’s changed things.

Ruminator: So it’s your friendship with him that’s changed your mind about having him as president more than his specific political positions?

Kinky: Well, actually, I agree with most of his political positions overseas, his foreign policy....I basically think he played a poor hand well after September 11. What he’s been doing in the Near East and in the Middle East, he’s handling that well, I think.

Until I read this interview, I had no idea that Kinky gave so much thought to foriegn policy. He doesn't fall for the liberal media BS -- he thinks for himself, and he'll make an AWESOME governor!

Come check out my blog at

Bradley Bowen said...

Okay, your comment tells me exactly what I need to know about Kinky. He supported Bush in 2004 and supports Iraq? I'm sorry, I'd rather not have a looney toon as my governor.

I'm not writing him off. I'm saying that he is dishonestly earning college voters that assume he's liberal because he's different.

Jo Smith said...

Bradley, I agree with you. Kinky is trying to pass himself off as kind of "kinky" and independent. This is somewhat similar to a "Republican" in "Independent" clothing. Like the average Republican, he is banking on that no one will really see what he stands for and he will try to get by on cammouflaged "Bush Neo-Con" talking points.

Bradley Bowen said...

Exactly, Jo! What better reason to vote for Bell than that the other three candidates voted for Bush in 2004? Friedman is definitely a wolf in sheep's clothing.