Lt. Governor David Dewhurst refused to call up a bill that would have given the Legislature greater power to override a governor's veto. Dewhurst presides over the Senate. It is said that Dewhurst claims Governor Perry asked for the bill to be sidelined.
According to the LufkinDailyNews.com, in some apparent backroom dealing, the governor who has vetoed more bills than any other - being the longest-serving governor, didn't favor the bill being moved forward by State Senator Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio. "According to a Dallas Morning News piece, Wentworth says the governor and lieutenant governor conspired to keep the Senate from considering the proposed amendment - despite the fact that 26 of 31 senators favored its passage."
It is no wonder, then, that the obvious winner from the just ended Texas Legislative session is Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson. Wayne Slater and Christy Hoppe write of this conclusion in the Dallas Morning News. "Kay Bailey Hutchinson steered clear of Austin, but the fractious 140-day session that ended Monday without tackling some high-profile problems gives her plenty with which to target Gov. Rick Perry in the coming Republican primary.
"The summary judgment in regard to this session is lack of leadership," said Southern Methodist University political scientist Cal Jillson. "That's her theme."
While pandering to the social conservatives, Perry failed to deliver on any of his promises to them. Perry was vocal on his support of mandatory ultrasounds before an abortion and of fighting Washington environmental regulations on business. "Moreover, the governor cast himself in populist terms, attending anti-tax "tea party" protests, touting states' rights and sympathizing with advocates of secession."
"While Perry has focused on recruiting the party's most conservative wing, Hutchinson's political blueprint envisions an appeal to center-right voters. To that end, the partisan warfare it ignited underscores her message that Texas needs a leader who can unite people, not divide them."
Pandering for the next election is not a good strategy for state leadership.