Rick Perry vs. the World *
Tracking the 2006 Texas gubernatorial race.
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Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Todd Gillman in the DMN on the Perry endorsement list
Todd Gillman writes in the Dallas Morning News about Perry's release of his Harris County Steering Committee just before KBH spoke at the Lincoln Day fundraising dinner.
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison got star billing Tuesday night at the Harris County GOP's annual dinner. Gov. Rick Perry, who wasn't there, tried to upstage her.

Hours before she took the microphone at the Houston Intercontinental hotel, the Perry campaign released a list of endorsements from Houston-area party leaders, and if it sounded like the dinner's guest roster, it was no accident. Even county GOP chairman Jared Woodfill, who was master of ceremonies for the program, was on the list.

It was the latest in a series of subtle and not so subtle digs the Perry and Hutchison camps have traded lately, as she positions herself for a potential challenge in next year's gubernatorial primary and he tries to scare her off.

"The problem is, when you challenge an incumbent late in the process, you're going to run into the problem that most of the base is already committed," said Harris County tax assessor Paul Bettencourt, whose name also appeared on the "Harris County Steering Committee" list released by the Perry campaign. "Doesn't mean they won't vote for Kay for Senate."


One other sign that Mr. Perry will put up a fight emerged Tuesday: a letter to Texas GOP chairwoman Tina Benkiser from the leaders of the Republican Governors Association announcing their support for Mr. Perry's re-election, in the primary if necessary.

"By any measure," wrote Nevada Gov. Kenny Guinn and Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the RGA chairman and vice chairman, Mr. Perry has been "immensely successful" and deserves re-election.

Perry campaign manager Luis Saenz said the governor didn't ask for the letter but welcomed it. "It's big," he said.

As Ms. Hutchison remains coy, others are positioning themselves in case she does leave the Senate.
The article notes that Henry Bonilla (running for Kay's seat) and Tom DeLay (the next speaker, if Chris Elam is right) shared the bill with KBH at the HCRP fundraiser.

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