Fact-Checking Gene Locke

Someone added me to the email list for the Gene Locke Latino Vote Report.  I have a culprit in mind, and it is not Jose Soto, the putative author of the email.

Prompted by said unsolicited email, I surfed on over to Gene’s website this afternoon.  Sadly, David Letterman turned down my idea for a Gene Locke-inspired top ten list, so you will have to make due with my abbreviated version:

Top Five Things on Gene Locke’s Website That Make You Say Oh No He Didn’t

  1. A press release today claims: Locke is the only mayoral candidate who has never voted for a tax increase. Well, duh. Using that logic, Locke is also the only mayoral candidate who has never voted against a tax increase.  Locke is the only mayoral candidate in the race right now who has never held elected office.  He has never, therefore, been in a position to vote, as an officeholder, on increasing, decreasing, levying, or doing anything else with our taxes.
  2. “As I have previously stated, I reject any association with the style of campaigning that was the subject of an article in the Houston Chronicle today.” OK, does he reject the STYLE of campaigning (vicious ad hominem attacks against a candidate’s sexual orientation) or the CONTENT of such campaigning?  See, because maybe he thinks if they’d been virulent homophobes with a little more panache, it would be totally legit to go after his opponent that way.  (At least back in September he called out another group’s message for being reprehensible, so why’s he backing off now?  Oh yeah, now he needs their votes.)
  3. First as City Attorney, then in private practice, Gene led the negotiations of three of Houston’s largest public-private partnerships – Reliant Stadium, Minute Maid Park and the Toyota Center. Soon to be Houston’s three sports arenas with the largest  balloon payments on their variable-rate bonds.  Can anyone say Houston Sports Authority Bail-Out?  Don’t worry, though, because I can’t imagine taxpayers will get shafted by any of this.
  4. The Ladies for Locke Kerfluffle? Oh, no, I haven’t forgotten the mud-flap flap, and you can bet there are plenty of others just like me.
  5. Thanks to the email that got me going today, Jose Soto’s Latino Vote Report, I learned that at Gene Locke’s 11/6 lunch for Latino leaders at El Jardin, carne guisada and crispy tacos were on the menu, but at Annise Parker’s Latino breakfast, the menu featured menudo, pancakes, and omelets.  Is this some kind of weird John Kerry eats quiche jab?  I just don’t get it, but I think it is supposed to be some kind of insult.

I know things get silly in the waning days of dying campaigns, but c’mon people, you are just getting sloppy.

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2 Responses to Fact-Checking Gene Locke

  1. matt says:

    I made the same comment about “not serving on the governing body of a taxing entity” and was appropriately corrected earlier today. Mr. Locke was appointed to the first board of the Houston Community College System when it was severed from HISD. HCCS is a taxing entity.

    More research into HCCS’s taxing authority at the time is required to find out whether the opportunity ever arose for the first board to raise taxes. At the time, their tax rate may still have been rolled into HISD’s. Or, maybe Mr. Locke is the only candidate in the race to have voted to impose a property tax where none before existed.

    • nonsequiteuse says:

      Hope you or someone else can do the research. Since he was appointed, technically it is still true to say he has not been elected to any office, although I don’t know if he then had to be re-elected after his initial appointment.

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