As early voting begins today and Texans head to the polls to vote in either the Republican or Democratic primaries, some candidates are beginning to prepare for general election matchups in anticipation of primary victories. Rick Perry announced yesterday that he was going to “lead by example,” and propose cuts in his offices budget for fiscal year 2010-11–this on the heels of having ordered other state agencies to cut their budgets by 5%. Perry has decided to take a backwards approach toward fiscal responsibility and lead from behind and not the front. Typical.
Having said that, what is fascinating about Perry suddenly finding his inner-fiscally responsible self, is that former Houston Mayor Bill White, a potential gubernatorial opponent to Rick Perry in a general election matchup this fall, has been talking about fiscal responsibility and boasts a record as Houston's Chief Executive of leading on fiscal issues and efficiencies in government. Perry, who must worry about a looming runoff between either Kay Bailey Hutchison or the surging Tea Party darling Deborah Medina, picked an all too convenient and desperate time in his campaign to suddenly channel his inner Bill White.
As White continues to rake in newspaper endorsements across the state, the San Antonio Express nailed it best when describing the former Houston Mayor, and Deputy Secretary of Energy's accomplishments:
White's understanding of energy, how to run a business and the need to run a tight fiscal ship make a solid combination of qualifications for a governor.
Bill White has steered the nation's 4th largest city through recent tough economic times by increasing city reserves, lowering the city's tax base, demanding more efficient government, cutting agency budgets without negatively affecting city services, and simply leading by example. Perry has no record of fiscal responsibility to run on and attempting to manufacture a record where one doesn't exist, or attempting to lead from behind when one must lead from the front, is indicative of a shaky incumbent governor desperate to be more like his potential Democratic opponent.