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September 07, 2004

Perry Approval at 43%

By Byron LaMasters

The Texas Poll came out over the weekend, and Rick Perry's doing better than last time. He's at 43% approve, 47% disapprove:

Some 47 percent in the Scripps Howard survey rated the governor's job performance as fair or poor, a five-point drop from last spring's poll during a failed special legislative session on school finance, when more than half disapproved.

The results, showing Perry's approval rating at 43 percent, are contained in the latest Scripps Howard survey of 1,000 adult Texans Aug. 9-26. Last spring, Perry was popular with only 37 percent of Texans.

The latest poll includes 38 percent Republicans, 26 percent Democrats and 25 percent independents.

Perry spokeswoman Kathy Walt said the governor continues to base policies on principles rather than polls, but a political scientist said the latest results look bad for Perry.

The relatively high percentage of Republicans polled underscore how troubling Perry's ratings are, said Bob Stein, Rice University political scientist.

"This is not an incumbent governor who should feel good about being re-elected," said Stein. "This is going to only add additional evidence that Kay Bailey Hutchison and the comptroller will think seriously about running against the governor."

For someone who had no budget plan, no redistricting plan and no realistic school finance, and got himself embarrassed mightly with all of the above, Rick Perry's lucky that he's not under forty percent. And it's hard to keep a straight face when you see the three words of "Rick Perry" and "principled" in the same sentence. Anyway, here's how the folks that might run against Perry in the primary shape up:

Hutchison's popularity soars ahead of all other state leaders, the poll shows, with 62 percent saying she's doing excellent or good versus 24 percent who rate her fair to poor.

During a visit to South Texas this week, the senator took aim at Perry for pushing policies that have cut 147,000 children from the Children's Health Insurance Program, leaving millions of tax dollars in Washington instead.


Strayhorn rates positively with 45 percent of Texans polled, versus only 39 percent during the ill-fated legislative session last spring.

She rates negatively with only 23 percent of those polled. Another 32 percent said they didn't know either way.


Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst also has fairly low name recognition, the poll indicates, with 36 percent polled saying they didn't know enough to rate him. He rated favorably with 35 percent of those polled and unfavorably with 29 percent.

Let the bloodbath begin.

Posted by Byron LaMasters at September 7, 2004 10:38 AM | TrackBack


Is Hutchison a certain candidate?

I cannot imagine for the life of me why someone would give up a Senate seat to take over the tar baby that is the Texas Governorship.

Given the current makeup of the Texas Legislature, I can't imagine any progress on any of the major issues facing the state over the next 4 years. Whoever becomes governor is going to find their political fortunes tied to the legislature I imagine.

Posted by: Kent at September 7, 2004 02:56 PM

I believe that Kay Bailey's candidacy for Governor is purley based upon 2 factors:

1.) The Ann Richards Factor. Gov. Richards is a shining example of what a fiery Texan woman can accomplish in our great state. Richards is a notable fundraiser with high national recognition, and has a great private sector job in NYC.

2.) Senator Hutchison has hit a glass ceiling in the Senate. She can accomplish a greater legacy back home and tap her fundraising base nationally outside of constricted FEC finance laws to blow Perry (thank the lord) out of the water early on.

The problem for the Democratic candidates that will emerge (short list: Lampsons, Turner, Sanchez, and maybe Ron Kirk) is that none of them have a great enough state wide name recognition to emerge from the field unscathed enough to oppose the GOP candidate.

Unless the State Party can use calculated triage and get others to back down and accept a coordinated effort for an alternate seat, the Democrats have a long way to go before they can pose a significant threat to the GOP.

Posted by: Wade at September 7, 2004 05:40 PM

Hmm, so who would the GOP try to put in KHB's senate seat if this happens?

Posted by: Jason Young at September 7, 2004 05:52 PM

Probably Dewhurst, and Strayhorn would run for lite guv, both would probably be contested to some extent though. Joe Barton wants to run for US Senate as would Henry Bonilla. And Strayhorn would probably be contested even for an open lite guv run since enough people don't like her.

Posted by: Byron L at September 7, 2004 06:18 PM

I still think Kay can win a state wide race, but cannot win a Republican primary. The hard core base of the Republican party does not like her. For the last several State conventions they have challenged her credentials. She is not right wing kooky enough for them. I hope she bloodies Perry up enough so that he survives, but maimed, going into the general (I am, of course, speaking metaphorically - I do not wish physical ill will on anyone).

Posted by: WhoMe? at September 7, 2004 10:08 PM
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