vote-getter in November, topping LBJ and the rest. It is just conceivable that Gladden could win this primary, not likely, but conceivable. Who knows how the state’s approximately 750,000 new voters are going to vote this year, those of them who do turn out? Gladden is an attractive and savvy candidate, an unapologetic liberal. There is an anti-Establishment current running in Texas and Barnes is identified with the Connally team. I believe COPE would be preparing to endorse Barnes this weekend were it not for Gladden’s entry into the race. With Gladden in, labor has had to reconsider things and has offered to recommend, not endorse, him. Further, it is said he has been offered $10,000 of labor money for his campaign, would be plugged in a mailout to the 225,000 persons on the AFL-CIO’s mailing list, and would be recommended in labor slate cards in all counties but Harris and Dallas. There are many in politics hereabouts who will tell you this is a good deal; that Don Yarborough in 1962 did better among labor voters with a recommendation than he would have with an endorsement. That’s possible, but I doubt it. In any case, why not endorse Gladden? Principle has some place in politics. And Barnes will not be in a position next year to go against liberal goals to the ex 12 The Texas Observer tent he could last year. Tide and time are now with liberals. So what have COPE and the State AFL-CIO to fear in endorsing Gladden over Barnes? Labor’s hopes for the next Senate will not, I think, be adversely affected to a great extent if Barnes beats a labor-endorsed Gladden. For a time it appeared Don Yarborough, the liberals’ entry in the governor’s race, might not get a COPE endorsement. It now appears he will, although, again, some of the liberal Senators are behind other candidates. Sen. Charles Wilson of Lufkin is for John Hill. So is Fort Worth Sen. Don Kennard, who has also aided Barnes’ campaign. Probably several other Senators why fly liberal colors are supporting both Hill and Barnes. Labor’s defense that it must not embarrass the liberal Senators by endorsing Gladden over Barnes does not, somehow, seem to apply to the governor’s race. Would it not logically follow that Yarborough, likewise, should not be endorsed by COPE, since several liberal senators are leaning towards Hill? Somehow, no. I don’t know why. Just what is it with our Senators, anyway? It is hardly for me to say who is a true liberal, and who is not. But what goes on when men who say they are liberal side with a conservative during a tight campaign? What is Wilson up to? And Kennard? How do Mauzy, Schwartz, and some of the others stand on the Yarborough race? We know they have for saken Gladden. Liberals must hold their leaders’ feet to the fire more assiduously; this done, we will not fail people like Don Yarborough and Don Gladden who have stood for principles liberals cherish. As for myself, if it should come to that, I would vastly prefer to lose with Yarborough and Gladden than win with Hill and Barnes. The Conference I hope the upcoming conference of Texas liberals and radicals will provide more dialogue than debate. I expect and hope for debate, but I am more interested that enhanced understanding, not -rhetoric, proceed from the discussions. There will be no scoreboard hanging above the speakers’ heads that weekend; I expect some rancor will arise, some sparks be struck. That is fine, but I hope participants will talk to and not at each other. I urge you to attend that weekend of March 16-17. It should be an entertaining, stimulating time, perhaps significant in the development of thought on the Texas left. I think it’s interesting that I had rather a hard time lining up enough liberals for the conference’s program. I talked to about 15 persons before I found five I thought would be good and who were willing to participate. Those who dethey might have to play straight man to selves now to the extent that they do not honestly feel they could well represent liberalism as we have known it. I’ve been loking further left in the last year or more and believe many Texas liberals are; some of the names of these radicalizing liberals would surprise you. I now am beginning to think that Texas liberalism is moving further leftward generally. We have very few cancellations of Observer subscriptions for our stand against President Johnson and the Vietnam war. I now sense a growing sympathy with the Observer’s gradual movement further left. Consider the letters in this issue’s Dialogue section in response to Walter G. Hall’s article in which he defended President Johnson; most of them attack Johnson and the war. I believe that response is characteristic of the liberal community of Texas and represents its sentiments. I am surprised about it. Most of the exceptions to this general feeling that I have found are in the ranks of organized labor. I believe such persons are shortsighted in not acknowledging the crucial challenge to people of good will that the war and the Johnson presidency pose. Many of our readers have wearied of the Observer’s occupation with Vietnam, believing we should stick to Texas politics alone; but I believe many others agree with us that Vietnam and Johnson are the overriding issues of our time and that this is an ex
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The Texas Rangers are tasked with investigating corruption and crimes by public officials. Those officials are rarely held accountable.