Page 8


Life Insurance Company in Texas with $1,000,000 Capital and Surplus _Paid in Cash Prior to writing business August, 1954. ‘ To set a World’s Production record of over $33,000,000 in its first year. T ST And Now Over $43,000,000 LIFE INSURANCE IN FORCE AS OF DEC. 31, 1955. Home Office : 5011 Fannin, Houston, Texas AGENCIES THROUGHOUT TEXAS Western Indemnity Life Insurance Company Session Possible; Senators Subpoenaed Hardeman, Hughes Poll House Members on Issue; Texas Bar Grievance Groups Meet Here in March AUSTIN T-Wo legislators are canvassing House members on whether a special session should be held in March, and the Texas Bar, smarting under public reaction to. revelations that lawyers in . the. Legislature have taken retainer fees from persons interested in’ legislation, will convene a session of grievance. committees from all over the state in Austin March 2-3. Reps. D. B. Hardeman of Denison and Charles Hughes of Sherman, liberal House leaders, sent 148 separate petitions to their fellow House mernbets on the issue of whether they want a special House session March I to consider impeachment of any state officials, “especially with regard to the numerous recent failures of insurance companies but not restrictive thereto.” They said they will announce the vote Feb. 10: The Houston Chronicle revealed that 42 House members and Senator Doyle Willis of Fort Worth favor a special session out of 128 legislators who replied by phone or letter to a Chronicle questionnaire. The ConstiL tution requires appro -Yal of 76 House members for the calling of a special session by the membership. “The integrity and the efficiency of a number of our state officials, both administrative and legislative, have been questioned,” Hughes and Hardeman said in a letter .to their colleagues. Maurice Bullock, president of the State Bar, told a workshop on public relations attended here last weekend by members of grievance committees: “Our public relations program is going to fall flat on its face unless our grievance program works bettes, than it has been working.” A TOTAL.of ten state senators have been subpoenaed by the Waco grand jury. Last week Sens. William Moore of Bryan and Carlos Ashley of Llano testified, along with former Senator R.C. Lanning, who received fees from U. S. Trust & Guaranty while still chairman of the State Board of Control. Sen. Gus Strauss of Hallettsville was also subpoenaed, but he pleaded ill health. His law partner, Armand Schwartz, who Strauss has said did work for Shoemake, did testify, however. tistrict Attorney Tom Moore, Jr., said in Waco that seven more senators have been ordered to appear this week : Ottis Lock of Lufkin and William Fly of Cuero, both members of the Senate Investigating Committee; and Crawford Martin of Hillsboro, Neville Colson of Navasota, R. A. Weineh of Seguin, Rogers Kelley of Edinburg, and Kilmer Corbin of Lubbock. The grand jury last week heard testimony from the Waco manacter of Southwestern Bell on A. B. b Shoe -make’s telephone calls. Presumably this will bear on Shoemake’s legislative relations on behalf of U. S. Trust. D.A. Moore, a potential candidate for Attorney General, commented : “We want to find out how much senators received from U. S. Trust, when, how, and what for. If they were paid for trying cases, we want to know if they actually did’ try and or if they have any record of it. If ‘they were paid for lobbying we want to know about that, too. “It is doubtful that the grand jury here will be able to return any indictments,” he said. “We might not have venuethat is, it couldn’t be shown that any wrong doing took place in this county. However, the jury can AUSTIN Governor Shivers, in an aside from his prepared text that did not make the state press, told Beaumont Rotarians last week that charges of corruption in his Administration are part of a “get Shivers” campaign that goes back to a time when Communists pledged he would never be elected to another office. This was the same speech in which Shivers said the “current tragedy” in Texas insurance should not be called a “scandal” and that “political jackals and vultures” have tried to make capital out of the situation. The Beaumont Journal reported : “In discussing the insurance situation, the Governor departed from his prepared text to charge that the political ‘smear’ is part of a ‘get Shivers’ campaign that goes back to a time when Communists pledged ‘Allan Shivers never wilt be elected to another office’ by. the ‘people of Texas. He said that grew out of his proposal for a state law that would place the death penalty upon those who followed the Communist Party line in Texas.” Two other speakers, Ralph Yarbor and may make a public report of its findings when it’s through … Any helpful information our grand jury finds will be passed along to other district attorneys and other grand juries.” A SHLEY gave back the $10,000 cash fee he got from Shoemake late in 1954 and early in 1955 a portion of it during the Legislature. He was regarded as Shoemake’s chief legislative champion. He said he had not earned the Whole -fee because of the U.S. Trust receivership and that therefore he was refunding it all, even though he had “certainly earned a part” of it. He said he worked for Shoemake as a lawyer “in centralizing, coordinating, and improving, within the law, the operations, control, and management of the corporation. “It was an honorable employment that any honorable lawyer could in honor accept, and I accepted it as an ough adn James P. Hart, repeated the charges of corruption in Austin in speeches last week, as have most of the principarl state political speakers this year. “If one person Commits an illegal or dishonest act, that is one too many,” Shivers said, but only 15 of 29,000 state employees or officials have been fired, suspended, or indicted for dishonesty in the past six years, and 28,985 people should not be condemned for what 15 did. Shivers added that less than 75 insurance firms have been put in receivershipin 15 years out . of 1,400 Texas companies. “It is a terrible thing for even one dollar to be lost in the failure of any insurance company, but calling the relatively few failures suffered in the past 15 years a ‘scandal’ doesn’t make it a scandal,” said the Governor. “I am not saying that there has been no dishonesty or bad judgment,” he said. “However, the right to criticize and discuss is not the right to destroy recklessly and needlessly the confidence of the people in their state government, in the insurance industry in Texas, in the Legislature, or in any other group.” Shivers also accused “several officeseekers including one three-time loser” of “encouraging” depositors and policyholders of U.S. Trust at a Houston meeting “to applaud and cheer the news of the apparent death of the man who had caused their suffering.” \(Yarborough and Senator Jimmy Phillips of Angleton addressed the meeting. Phillips announced the news bulletin that A. B. Shoemake, U. S. Trust president, had been found shot. Both men were shocked when the applause broke out, ‘they said after the H ART made his first prin . cipal speech in some time. He appears to have -a renewed interest in the poslitical season. “It has always seemed to me that there could be no greater reward than the knowledge of a public serviec well done,” he said “And yet all of us who have read the newspapers lately have come to the painful, the shocking realization that the public’s respect for our state government is now probably at the lowest ebb that it has ever reached, and that there is good and sufficient basis for this public feeling,” Hart said. The people should rise up in “righteous indignation” and correct “this. shameful situation,” he said. He proposed “plain honesty in public officials”; “a thorough exposure of what has been going on” ; removal of “corrupt officials” and protection of the innocent; adequate annual salaries honorable employment,” Ashley said. Senator William Shireman of Corpus Christi has also returned his $3,000 cash fee. These returned funds will be distributed to those to whom -the receivered company is indebted. From Shireman’s home town came harsh words about such fees from Rep. Curtis Ford. Legislative integrity. has been “forsaken for compensa-, tion,” he said, and “one is almost ashamed to admit he is a member of . the Legislature.” He said he was shocked that the Senate committee asked the State Bar to “distinguish for them the difference between a bribe and a fee. Are we sunk so low 1” he asked. In Dallas, Elton Miller, the publisher of the weekly, The White Rocker, told the Democratic Women’s Political Assn. of Dallas tlfat any legislator who has received money from insurance or investment companies, other lobbying groups, or who took an airplane ride to horse races in Kentucky in a plane owned by Tennessee Gas Transmission Company \(Ob-. re-elected. for legislators ; and strengthening of the governorship and weakening of “small groups” which control legislative decision-making. “There would be few venal or con , rupt politicians, except for the existence of private citizens who want to control public offices for their own selfish private gain,” Hart said. YARBOROUGH’S speech did not contain anything he has not said ‘frequently, but the occasion was news : a dinner gathering of the Bexar County “We Want Yarborough Club” at La Villita. Yarborough, far out ahead of Hart and John White in recent Belden Polls on the governor’s race, told his backers that Texans should “lift the black cloud of sham _e and evil … over state government.” He decried “middle-of the-road” Or “harmony” talk in the party, saying that “adversaries will try to ., scare “WS out of doing this job because they are deathly afraid that we will do it.” “We can rescue our state government’ from the decade of indifference through which we have drifted and and become mired in. We can drain the sink of iniquity in Austin, and restore the state government’s honor and integrity,” Yarborough said. He called on Texans “of all faiths and shades of political opinion to join together …. to give tomorrow’s Texans a better government than the one we now have.” J. J. Holmes, Austin contractor who got a relative handful of votes in 1954, announced he will run for governor again. He said if he was elected Bascorn Giles “would have plenty of company,” and he took -the somewhat novel tack of saying Yarborough is “nothing more than a front man for Allah Shivers.” Republican women, meeting in Austin, were told by Mrs. R. D. O’Callaghan, president of the Texas Federation of Republican Women, that a strong opposition party would “keep officialshonest” and might have slowed down the insurance, land, and investment scandals. In Houston the Harris County Republican Executive Committee said the G.O.P. could provide an administration “to clean up the mess at Austin.” The woman who submitted the resolution said it is up to the Republicans to fight “the graft and corruption … on the state level.” Byron Skelton, chairman of the loyalist Democratic Advisory Council, announced a workshop on political methods and convention campaigns at the Rice Hotel in Houston Feb. 18. Page 4 Feb. 8, 1956 The Texas’ Observer Shivers Says It Goes Back to Communists