September 28th, 2010
02:48 PM ET
4 years ago

Democrats upping ante in Texas showdown

(CNN) - Democrats are raising the stakes in the gubernatorial battle deep in the heart of Texas.

The Democratic Governors Association launched a television commercial Tuesday attacking Republican Gov. Rick Perry, who's bidding for a third full term in office. The ad characterizes Perry as a career politician, with the narrator asserting that "on the issues, 25 years as a politician has changed Rick Perry – for the worse."


Despite the fact that Republicans have dominated statewide elections in Texas for over a decade and the political winds appear to favor the GOP this year, polls suggest that Perry holds only a single digit lead over former Houston Mayor Bill White, the Democratic nominee.

A survey released Sunday by Blum and Weprin Associates for a consortium of Texas newspapers indicates that Perry holds a 46 to 39 percent advantage over White among likely voters. Other recent surveys also put Perry's lead in single digits.

A Democratic source confirmed to CNN that the ad begins running in the Dallas television market Tuesday, where polls indicate Perry holds a substantial lead.

The DGA, according to the source, is spending up to $700,000 this week to air the commercial through "Lone Star First," an independent expenditure group in Texas that the DGA supports. Word of the ad was first reported nationally by the Washington Post.

In response to the commercial, the Perry campaign tied White to national Democrats.

"Considering they share the same policies, it's not surprising that President Obama's political machine would come into Texas to help Bill White's struggling campaign. Gov. Perry will continue talking about creating jobs, the economy, border security and other issues that truly matter to Texans," Perry campaign communications director Mark Miner told CNN.

Perry took over as Texas governor in late 2000, when then-Gov. George W. Bush stepped down after winning the White House. Perry is the longest serving governor in Lone Star state history.

The DGA is also launching ads this week against Massachusetts gubernatorial nominee Charlie Baker and Tom Foley, the GOP nominee in Connecticut.

Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PsteinhauserCNN

soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. jillib

    Perry's got a fight on his hands, a fight that I, as a TX resident, hope he loses, and loses badly.

    Bill White is a great alternative – he's actually the anti-Perry. He was a great mayor, and won consistently with large majorities of the vote.

    I guarantee you, Bill White would never embarrass the state by hinting at secesion to woe the hicks. He also wouldn't put on the phony cowboy bravado, puff his chest, and refuse education funding – when the state is ranked near the bottom in education. He also wouldn't rail against the federal government and then go crawling to them with his hand out. Perry is a fraud, and it's time for him to go, Texas could and should be doing so much better than it is.

    September 28, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  2. Rick McDaniel

    The issue, at this time, is whether we want to take a huge risk, with a democrat, who are known to waste and squander OUR money, or not, to take a chance on someone who seems like a nicer person.

    That's a huge risk, and I would rather go with the known, under current conditions, than take a chance on the unproven.

    September 28, 2010 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  3. KB from Texas

    who are they polling? I live in Dallas and everyone I talk to are voting for Bill White. I have assisted with signing up a substantial amount of new voters and they are all voting for Bill White.

    September 28, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  4. bvaudt

    I will be voting for a Democrat for governor for the first time in my life. Governor Perry has demonstrated an arrogant lack of concern for the State of Texas. He has robbed the highway budget and the education budget for the sake of face saving. He attempted to decree a health initiative. He declares a $21B shortfall to be an $8B rainy day fund. Well Rick, it is raining and you are the one who is all wet.

    September 28, 2010 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    Indeed. Perry should secede from office...he already seceded from reality.

    September 28, 2010 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  6. King

    The fight is on for the middle class go dem go

    September 28, 2010 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  7. Republican

    Democrats are trying to discredit what Governnor Rick Peery has done for the state of Texas. Governor Perry all the way.

    September 28, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  8. malabar

    Thats why people are moving TO Tx and we have avoided nevadas, floridas, californias, new jerseys, etc. . . housing market and financial disasters. cuz Perry is that incompetent. right. if longevity is a problem, wud that apply to dems too? i speak of more than just kerrys ass ugly mug

    September 28, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  9. Sandy

    Why have you closed comments on the Obama Fox News post? Because you don't want to hear the backlash that by doing that you are silencing those who think that that view is completely bogus? Your gesture in blocking comments alone is proof that CNN, and the rest of your peers, also serve your own political agenda. The ideal of unbiased news is exactly that, an ideal. It doesn't exist. It becomes even more threatened when you block comments from readers on a controversial posting. You should be ashamed.

    September 28, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  10. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    Go Dems GO! Its high time that the Democrats wake-up and get down in the gutter with the GOP-baggers. The GOP does not mince any words, the GOP strategy has always been hate, fear, lies and division. The Democrats must point out to America the difference between the GOP policies which have failed America over and over and over, and the Democrat's policies which offer ALL Americans healthcare, LOWER taxes for the Middle & Working classes; diplomacy versus war, etc.

    Democrats need to tell America over and over that while they & President Obama were doing all they could to dig the U.S. out of the Bush Financial Disaster, the Republican-baggers stood by with their arms crossed and NO firmly on their lips!

    I ask America: What have the Republicans done for you lately? In the last 10 years? What? Besides give .......1%....... of the wealthiest people a tax cut.

    September 28, 2010 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  11. Kenny West

    Scary when the president of the US wants to silence what he considers an opposition news outlet. Even the left wing media are turning on The Annointed One for the pending destruction of the Democrat party.

    September 28, 2010 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  12. GOP Scorched Earth Politics

    Great ad. Perry is a tool and advocates a Neo-Confederacy. Anyone who advocates succession should not be allowed to work for the government, yet alone be called governor.

    September 28, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  13. Time To Give Perry the BOOT!

    The problems we have and face in Texas that account for us being stymied is that it has been taken over by Republicans. We flourished profusely when under Democratic wings. Now, we have so many problems facing us and yet the Republicans keep trying to pull the wool over our eyes telling us Perry is creating jobs, etc. etc. yet we are not seeing them nor any other of the supposed benefits he has brought to Texas. What he has done is live in a house in Austin that is costing the taxpayers thousands each month. So far, he has refused to budge despite the public outcry for his lavish lifestyle paid for by citizen tax dollars!

    Enough is enough! Time to boot Perry out of office and bring in Bill White to fix the problems of the current career office holder that are COSTING the taxpayers megabucks to support his lifestyle with little to no action to show Texas for his real accomplishments.

    September 28, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |