THIS PAGE | E-MAIL THIS PAGE
Thursday, March 12, 1998
Dewhurst wins GOP nomination for land commissioner
By CHIP BROWN / Associated Press Writer
AUSTIN (AP) -- Houston businessman David Dewhurst upped the
ante in the Republican primary for land commissioner, and it paid
After spending $2 million on television advertising, Dewhurst,
a first-time candidate, narrowly avoided a runoff and clinched
the GOP nomination for land commissioner.
With all precincts reporting, Dewhurst had 265,352 votes or
State Sen. Jerry Patterson, R-Pasadena, had 216,200 votes or
Candidates who don't get more than half of the votes cast must
face a runoff against the second-place vote getter.
Don Loucks, a former Air Force pilot and ex-congressional aide
to Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, ran third with 36,655 votes or 7 percent.
In the Democratic primary, Richard Raymond, a state representative
from Benavides, was unopposed.
The land commissioner oversees more than 20 million acres of
public lands in Texas, including mineral rights that help pay
for public education, as well as loan programs for veterans and
The candidates were seeking to replace four-term Land Commissioner
Garry Mauro, the Democratic nominee for governor.
Dewhurst, 52, who guaranteed a $1.25 million loan to his campaign,
was criticized by Patterson and Loucks for running a campaign
based on television ads full of hopeful themes but devoid of substance.
"I have built a career in business on substance,"
Dewhurst said. "We talked specifics in all of my speeches
and there is no question that the voters of Texas liked what they
Patterson and Dewhurst raised roughly the same amount of money
from outside sources -- about $500,000 -- but Dewhurst then spent
his own money on top of that, airing TV ads since last December.
Patterson never aired a TV ad.
"He (Dewhurst) took his greatest asset, his finances,
and used it effectively," Patterson said. "That's his
constitutional right. But for all the money he spent, he barely
avoided a runoff."
Patterson vowed to run for land commissioner again in the future.
Dewhurst, founder of the energy and investment company Falcon
Seaboard, said he wants to cut the size of the General Land Office
while generating more money from the state's mineral rights for
education. He said he also wants to increase participation by
veterans in low-interest loan programs.
Raymond said he would make education the central issue of his
campaign. He accused Dewhurst of telling state leaders that addressing
problems in eduation is not his problem.
"It is time to realize that education is all our responsibility,"
Raymond said. "And I don't care how many millions you have
Mr. Dewhurst, Texans aren't going to buy off on a state leader
who would run away from our public schools."
Dewhurst, who made education a campaign theme early on, said
Raymond was jumping on the bandwagon late.
"I'm glad Mr. Raymond has finally acknowledged what I
have been saying all along, that education is important,"
Raymond is also pushing for a constitutional amendment to prevent
the privatization of Texas beaches and is attempting to use low-interest
loans as an incentive to get veterans to teach in Texas classrooms.
Send a Letter to the Editor about This
Send the URL (Address) of This Story to A Friend:
Abilene Reporter-News / Texnews / E.W. Scripps. Publications
the URL (Address) of This Story to A Friend: