Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Scott McClellan's mother has announced her Texas gubernatorial bid-as an independent. State comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn had considered a primary run against incumbent Rick Perry.

From the Houston Chronicle :
"It's time to shake Austin up," Strayhorn, who is now serving as a Republican officeholder, told reporters today, the filing deadline for the 2006 elections."Governor Perry may be doing the best he can, but after five years, we have learned he is not the strong leader we need to put Texas above politics," she added.

Strayhorn, who was first elected comptroller in 1998 as a Republican, had announced in June that she would challenge Perry for the Republican gubernatorial nomination. But last week she refused to dismiss speculation that she would run as an independent to avoid Perry's strong popularity in the GOP primary.

It is thought that low overall primary turnout-but potentially high turnout among conservatives-kept Strayhorn from challenging Perry as a Republican. (He had already lucked out of a re-election race against Kay Bailey Hutchinson.) A Perry spokesman remarked that Stayhorn's move showed her lack of "core convictions or guiding principles," which, for Perry's campaign, probably rings true. Win or lose, Strayhorn will siphon Republican votes away from Perry in November. Like many incumbent governors on the ballot in the coming year, his approval ratings are abysmal, precisely 38% in a recent poll.

Hat tip: Finding Center

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