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What the Heck Happened in Texas? Gov. Rick Perry Easily Beats Kay Bailey Hutchison

What the Heck Happened in Texas?  Gov. Rick Perry Easily Beats Kay Bailey Hutchison

Sitting Texas Governor Rick Perry won an easy victory over two challengers for the GOP nomination for governor, and in the end, the only thing terribly shocking about the race was that it was in question at all.  With over 50 percent of the vote, Perry showed he was the clear favorite of Republicans, garnering enough votes over his challengers to avoid any potential runoff.

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) came in a distant second at 30 percent, and Tea Party Activist Debra Medina had a low showing at 20 percent.  Hutchison came into the race expecting to be a much more formidable challenger to Perry; as a sitting U.S. Senator her name recognition, record and fundraising prowess were expected to be daunting.  But as the race continued on and party activist Debra Medina entered the fray, the campaign became less about the state of life in Texas and more about dissatisfaction with “Washington insiders,” the status quo, and underwent a renewed focus on the red meat social issues that have been whipping the national Republican party into a frenzy.

Bailey Hutchinson, with nearly two decades of service in Washington, and a slightly more moderate view on issues like abortion, eventually fell victim to a party who has begun begging for total purity and rigidity on all the issues important to the “value voters” brigade.  Suddenly, being one of the most popular public figures in the state was a liability, and having a reputation for working with and being liked by other politicians was a strike against her candidacy.  If you wanted to win, you had to prove you weren’t part of the “establishment.”  As NPR put it, “Only a Republican incumbent like Perry could paint himself — as President Ronald Reagan did running for re-election in 1984 — as the outsider candidate.”

The longest serving governor in Texas history, “outsider” Rick Perry, found that in many ways his biggest challenge was coming from party activist Debra Medina.  Although Medina never managed to poll above 20 percent in the race, her Tea Party rhetoric managed to influence Perry to travel even further to the right to shore up the party base’s vote.   Perry had to woo the Tea Party, he was discussing seccession.  He even had Sarah Palin in to campaign with him.

Medina’s actual outsider status, combined with her inability to keep her foot out of her mouth, including saying the government may had been involved in 9/11, made her virtually unelectable, but served its purpose in making the race about the resurgence of conservative pride over economics, unemployment, or any less flag-waving issues.

Perry will be running against former Houston mayor Bill White this November.

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66 comments

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3:03AM PDT on Nov 6, 2010

voting needs to be more regulated

10:01PM PDT on Mar 22, 2010

Most people ijn Texas are seeing what has happened on the national scene and have realized change is NOT good.

9:07PM PST on Mar 11, 2010

The reason I think he won, (coming from a former Texan), is that there is a rising animosity to anyone who is an incumbent politician. Currently, if impeachment is not an option in the case of our current administration, then eroding their power base through replacement by the opposing party candidates may work.

Many of the nation's voters are disappointed enough in what little good the Obama administration has done for our country, and how legislators like Joe Biden have harmed our international standing, and destroyed our political and military ties, are disappointed in Obama and in spite of being hard core Democrats, they regret voting for him.

Only political idiots would put Obama up for a second term. The dismaying fact is that we have many idiots, both political and medically defined in the Democratic party ranks, so watch who walks out on the debate stage next time.

Possibly, war will still be on in the election year, Gitmo will still operate in secret, collecting prisoners from our invasion of Iran, and "Yes we can!" Will have been changed to "Let me tell you why not."

6:21PM PST on Mar 7, 2010

well, the further to the right, the republican candidates shift, the better the chances that the moderates will go with someone else. as republican politicians shift ever more towards social fascism and economic anarchy, they will only become more an more unelectible... atleast i hope.

12:03PM PST on Mar 7, 2010

meh...

9:47AM PST on Mar 6, 2010

The American people are finally waking up and this is a sign of what is coming in November.

11:33PM PST on Mar 5, 2010

Hate to see those TeaDipHeads get even 20%.

8:04PM PST on Mar 5, 2010

The fundamentalist right wingers are destroying our democracy. Their heads are in the sand. (or somewhere else) They have highjacked the GOP just like the Taliban has hijacked a religion. And some of the democrats are getting worse too. Corporate greed has infected the whole system. We need to have term limits and campaign finance reform.

3:03PM PST on Mar 5, 2010

It is an anti anyone in Washington right now because of the extremely hard time Dems are having getting anything passed. I am becoming more and more convinced that if the hard right people don't wake up and realize we are living in an overpopulated world of older humans and the more crowed it gets the more need there will be for help from somewhere for goodness sakes! Many humans will start either fighting to death or dying from starvation.
It is time they realized this. Noone is asking for handouts they are just trying to survive! Reality sucks but you can't run away from it forever.

12:26PM PST on Mar 5, 2010

I have no idea

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