attorney general in 1966. In both instances the law’n’order rhetoric was a defense against possible charges that the liberal candidate would be soft on crime. Graves sounded more like his old, crusading self when he visited the city prison farm one Saturday morning. \(As a legislator, Graves visited reformatories when there were charges of brutality newsmen, mostly from the television stations, he viewed a naked prisoner, suffering from delerium tremens, beating the bare walls of a cell with his fist. Graves later charged that alcoholic prisoners have died from lack of medical treatment and a guard admitted that several prisoners have died in the cell where they keep alcoholics. The Post did not carry the story and the Chronicle buried it on page ten. Graves told the Observer he plans other such dramatic visits during the campaign, but he declined to describe them, as it would ruin the element of surprise. Second to the “crime crisis,” Graves has emphasized Houston’s water problems as “another example of the cold and haughty indifference displayed by the incumbent mayor toward the people of our great city.” He points out that in 1963 Welch campaigned on a platform to improve Houston’s water supply and distribution system. Houston has sufficient available water, but the city has grown faster than the distribution system, and during the summers many residents are forced to ration their home water supply. Welch has Incorporating the State Observer and the East Texas Democrat, which in turn incorporated the State Week and Austin Forum-Advocate. We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of man as the foundation of democracy; we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the human spirit. Editor, Greg Olds. Associate Editor, Kaye Northcott. Editor-at-large, Ronnie Dugger. Business Manager, C. R. Olofson. Business Manager Emeritus, Sarah Payne. Contributing Editors, Elroy Bode, Winston Bode, Bill Brammer, Lee Clark, Larry Goodwyn, Harris Green, Bill Hamilton, Bill Helmer, Dave Hickey, Franklin Jones, Lyman Jones, Larry L. King, Georgia Earnest Klipple, Larry Lee, Dave McNeely, Al Melinger, Robert L. Montgomery, Willie Morris, James Presley, Charles Ramsdell, John Rogers, Mary Beth Rogers, Roger Shattuck, Robert Sherrill, Dan Strawn, John P. Sullivan, Tom Sutherland, Charles Alan Wright. The editor has exclusive control over the editorial policies and contents of the Observer. None of the other people who are associated with the enterprise shares this responsibility with him. Writers are responsible for their own work, but not for anything they have not themselves written, and in publishing them the editor does not necessarily imply that he floated $49 million in water bonds, but he has put more emphasis on supplying the city’s industrial water needs than its residential needs. In an information sheet on water, the Graves staff writes, “The business of the city of Houston has been left to a man who abuses taxpayers’ money while vital city problems beg attention. The present mayor has taken care of his friends by awarding them city money if they contributed to his re-election campaigns and has blatantly abused the public trust in his now famous land deals last year.” \(Elsewhere in this issue is a listing of some of Welch’s land In a news item scheduled for release after the Observer went to press, Graves charges that Welch has “a record of abuse of public trust . . . so outrageous that to tell the full truth about it renders his tenure of office unbelievable.” While not going into detail on Welch’s real estate moonlighting, Graves points out that the city charter stipulates, “The mayor shall devote his entire time to looking after the business and administrative affairs of said city.” “I don’t see how you can hustle real estate and devote your ‘entire time’ to city business,” Graves says in his release. STILL, GRAVES HAS not emphasized Welch’s history of profiteering in office as strongly as one might expect him to. “I’ve been saying the city should have a full-time mayor. The $25,000 [salary] would be enough to support me agrees with them, because this is a journal of free voices. The Observer is published by Texas Observer Publishing Co., biweekly from Austin, Texas. Entered as second-class matter April 26, 1937, at the Post Office at Austin, Texas, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Second class postage paid at Austin, Texas. Single copy, 25c. One year, $7.00; two years, $13.00; three years, $18.00; plus, for Texas addressees, 4 14% sales tax. Foreign, except APO/FPO, 50c additional per year. Air-mail, bulk orders, and group rates on request. Editorial and Business Offices: The Texas Observer, 504 West 24th St., Austin, Texas 78705. Telephone 477-0746. Editor’s residence phone, 472-3631. Change of Address: Please give old and new address and allow three weeks. Form 3579 regarding undelivered copies: Send to Texas Observer, 504 W. 24th, Austin,.Texas 78705. Subscription Representatives: Arlington, George N. Green, 1202 S. Pecan, 277-0080; Austin, Mrs. Helen C. Spear, 2615 Pecos, 451-1805; Beaumont, Betty Brink, 2255 Harrison, 835-5278; Corpus Christi, Penny Dudley, 1224% Second St., 884-1460; Dallas, Mrs. Cordye Hall, 5835 Ellsworth, 821-1205; El Paso, Philip Hitnelstein, 331 Rainbow Circle, 584-3238; Ft. Worth, Dolores Jacobsen, 3025 Greene Ave., 924-9655; Houston, Mrs. Kitty Peacock, PO Box 13059, 523-0685; Lubbock, Doris Blaisdell, 2515 24th St.; Midland, Eva Dennis, 3523 Seaboard, 694-2825; Snyder, Enid Turner, 2210 30th St., 443-9497 or 443-6061; San Antonio, Mrs. Mae B. Tuggle, 204 Terrell Road, 826-3583; Wichita Falls, Jerry Lewis, 2910 Speedway, 766-0409. and my wife,” Graves told the Observer. “I have said our administration will be free of this kind of chicanery,” he added. Why not make more specific charges? “There is a fine line over which I can knock him [Welch] too hard,” Graves explained. “As a black man there is a certain amount of criticism that a white man will not take. . . .” What has he to lose by such criticism? “I could lose the middle class white voter who knows that Graves is clean. I have been Mr. Clean for so long I can’t change my role.” Many liberal Houston politicians as well as some of his campaign staff think he has adopted the wrong strategy. State Sen. Barbara Jordan of Houston, the only other well-known Negro politician in the state, fears that by running a “middle-of-the-road campaign, Graves is creating apathy and lethargy in the black community. “There’s not much work going on in the black precincts. That’s what’s worrying me,” she said. She pointed out that Cleveland’s black mayor, Carl Stokes, had to get 90% of the black vote to be reelected last week. Graves might need an equal number, but only about 30,000 of Houston’s 90,000 to 97,000 Negro voters usualy turn out without a get-out-the-vote effort, and 40% black participation is usually tops in a vigorous campaign. The city has approximately 350,000 registered voters. City offices are overwhelmingly held by conservatives. In times of a heavy vote, however, the electorate often goes for the liberal candidate. Houston supported both Hubert Humphrey and Don Yarborough last year. Bob Hall, chairman of the liberal Harris County Democrats, assesses the campaign this way: “Everything is too quiet, which means the incumbent is winning the race,” If any group could be expected to rally Houston’s liberals, it would be the Harris County Democrats, which this year for the first time has expressed interest in working in local campaigns. But, Hall explains, “we aren’t really organized yet to get out the vote.” Like Senator Jordan, Hall thinks the campaign has been unnecessarily moderate. “I don’t think Curtis is going to win any races trying to hold onto the white moderates,” he said. Graves is not getting the support he probably expected from some factions. Although one of his campaign tri-chairmen, Rep. Lauro Cruz, is a Mexican-American, he is stirring up little enthusiasm among chicano voters. PASO \(the Political Association for Spanish-Speaking endorse Graves. The group polled approximately 30 members, and only two were in favor of an endorsement. Part of the problem was that Graves had not requested PASO’s help, and part of it was simply lack of interest in the race. Why go out on a limb for a loser? Although Graves picked up support from a few individual labor organizations, THE TEXAS OBSERVER The Texas Observer Publishing Co. 1969 A Journal of Free Voices 63rd YEARESTABLISHED 1906 A Window to the South Vol. LXI, No. 23 74=> November 21, 1969
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