Wednesday, February 14, 2007


People who say nothing is happening in the Legislative Session are just bone-heads.

This has been the most surreal 48 hours or so. And Billy Clyde predicts it will get even better.

I went to some meetings yesterday (blah blah blah) but some interesting things happened along the way. Actually attended the wrong meeting on accident, but it turned out to be very interesting. You know how the House Committee rooms down in the Extension share a common area in the back? That's where you get your free Diet Cokes. Well I entered the wrong door and left, but shouldn't have.

Turns out that Senator John Carona went to this hearing -- I think it's called House Transportation; Krusee runs the deal, and seem to know a lot about that stuff -- and had a giant smackdown with Ric Williamson. Billy Clyde actually likes Ric Williamson, although he freely acknowledges that he's odd (both Ric and BC.) For some reason or another, Ric won't meet with Carona, who oversees TxDot. A lot a people, for whatever reason, seem to be anti-visiting these days.

If I have any political skills whatsoever, it's this innate ability to predict winners (John Carona) and losers (Ric Williamson). Although I could be wrong. No, actually I'm really right on this deal.

The committee hearing I was supposed to attend was Criminal Jurisprudence. Because I was a guest, there to provide Invited Testimony. About ten of us were asked to appear, but this one chick talked for about two hours. She must know WAY more about criminal law that is really necessary.

BC just sorta hung out in the back of the room goobering it up with a lobbyist who shall remain nameless (Allan Place). I know that many people find it utterly incomprehensible that Place and BC are capable of goobering it up -- but we can. Then I got bored and went to Representative Flynn's office. He's great. And then I went to Whitmire's office and Lucio's office and Dutton's office and Janek's office and Goolsby's office. Then I went back to the committee hearing. And that same girl in the black pantsuit was STILL talking. Hope she got it all off her chest.

Okay, so after about three hours of waiting around to give Invited Testimony at what should be a perfunctory hearing, where you meet staff and settle on a schedule, Chairman Pena finally called me. Now, Representative Pena is the pick of the litter. Assuming Patrick Rose or Lois Kolkkhorst don't enter the race, Aaron is my man for Governor next time.

But I probably need to have a talk with Chairman Pena. Actually, I may need back-up help.

When he called me to the dais, his staff had made me fill out a Witness Affirmation Card. I don't like those. Perjury, Under Oath, etc. ain't my cup of tea. Plus it's totally unnecessary when a committee doesn't have a legislative measure before it. IT'S AN ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING. A FORMAL MEETING. Please.

So for some reason, Chairman Pena asks me about blogging. And for some reason, I tell Terri Hodge that I love her. And Debbie Riddle asks something about her attire (I didn't understand that part at all.) I also got cheered (literally -- look at the VERY VERY end of the House tape, which I can't figure out how to link to; should be renamed The World's Most Complicated Web Site) for bringing Represtative Talton to the meeting.

Like I said, it was strange.

Oh, the reason I know about the House Web Site and Chairman Pena's loose lips is because (1) I checked it out; and (2) he apparently doesn't know what an "open mic" or "live mic" is. He confides to the world that he and his deskmate, who shall remain nameless (Joe Deshotel), spend all their valuable floor time reading worthless blogs. Now he's gonna have to plead with House Administration to please "lose" the tape.

Moving on ... I went to work this morning and a certain unnamed Senate aide (Tina Poston) said my meeting with her boss, Dan Patrick, needed to be rescheduled. Totally fine. Billy Clyde is not that hot on meetings.

But then my news source, who shall remain nameless (Harvey Kronberg), reported that Senator Patrick had some sort of presser at the time when our visit was scheduled where he displayed a million dollars in cash. Don't know what the "issue" was, but it seems weird that people carry so much hard currency these days. I like to have 80 or a 100 bucks in my wallet for spending money ... but a million seems like a lot to be walking around with. Oh well.

There is no direct connection between Ric Williamson or John Carona or Aaron Pena or Robert Talton or Terri Hodge or Dan Patrick or anyone else I mentioned here. Except to say that this session is better than people give it credit for.


Anonymous said...

A day in the life of Billy Clyde! You'll have to do more of these because they truly capture the essense of being a lobbyist.

Anonymous said...

Sorry the longest organizational meeting still belongs to Rep. Chavez. Three separate meetings over two days.

Anonymous said...

How do I get to remain nameless (David Guenthner) on your blog?

Becoming Calistabelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Billy Clyde said...

Dear Anon 1:
And the essence, too.

Dear Anon 2:
Please don't give Chairman Pena ideas.

Dear Anon 3:
You must legally change your first name to Carole and select three of the four following for a last name: Keeton, McClellen, Rylander and Strayhorn.