Most of Billy Clyde's tribe was attending church or running marathons this morning. Not to worry. I'll fill you in on what you missed.
Our Governor and the Pennsylvania Governor, Ed Rendell, went on the chat show today hosted by Mike Wallace's boy. Both performed very well, but the main topic was ... yeah, you guessed it: 11-year-old cervixes. People, enough already!
In an effort to steer the public policy dialogue back to a REAL issue, Billy Clyde suggests you check out former Lieutenant Governor Bill Hobby's op-ed in today's Houston Chronicle, available at www.chron.com for those of you with Internet access.
Governor Hobby takes a couple of fairly nasty gratuitous shots at Governor Perry. Maybe they've had long conservations about higher ed special item funding and the pro-special item folks decided that the only way to get Perry's attention was to plant an op-ed piece written by Hobby, for whom I have enormous respect. I mean, the guy did serve as Lieutenant Governor longer than anyone in Texas history. More importantly, he did a stint as Senate Parliarmentarian, the toughest job in state government and one that deserves compensation on par with the head football coach at TAMU.
Two things popped into my mind while reading Governor Hobby's article.
One, he claimed that Governor James "Pa" Ferguson was impeached because he vetoed the UT budget. Everything I have ever read or heard suggests that it was because he was shamelessly selling pardons and doing other crooked stuff. But since Hobby's daddy succeeded Governor Ferguson, he probably knows better than me.
The second is how odd it is that the Ferguson family and Hobby family -- as different, to put it mildly, as they are -- both produced trail-blazing women. Pa Ferguson's wife, Ma Ferguson, was Texas' first woman Governor. Big Bill Hobby's wife, Ovetta Culp Hobby, was the nation's first female Cabinet Secretary during the administration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was born in Grayson County.
Okay, I got sidetracked.
Little Bill Hobby wrote in his op-ed that Governors shouldn't micromanage universities and thus the all-or-nothing bill patterns in the General Appropriations Act are good things. Perry, as you may have heard, disagrees.
The reason the Legislature bundles these appropriation measures is because Governor William P. Clements vetoed a bunch of them a while back. Of the roughly 50 people Governor Clements consulted, roughly 49 of them said FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DON'T VETO THAT STUFF. So, natch, he sided with Bob Davis and struck them out of the budget.
Hobby then struck back by instructing Senator Bobby Joe Glasgow to, in essence, lump it all together and make it basically unvetoable. Even Clements wouldn't strike out a whole college -- mainly because he was vacationing in New Mexico and everything was auto-penned.
Now Governor Perry doesn't have a vacation spot in New Mexico, he thrives on vetoing stuff, and he absolutely LUVS calling special sessions. So this needs to get worked out.
Otherwise, it will be yet another defeat for my main legislative cause: restoring the word "summer" to a verb.