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Oh, happy day McGovern supporters swept the conventions in Travis County, Bexar County and El Paso County. McGovern got Marcos and led the committed factions out of Galveston. McGovern also did well in Denton. McGovern people took about 70 percent in San Antonio but the party leadership there shut them out of convention committees entirely. There were screaming matches and . . fistfights and stupendous skull duggery and conventions that lasted until 2 a.m. and happy days were here again as the Texas Democrats convened. The May 13 conventions held by county and senatorial districts produced confusion bordering on chaos in many areas and the promise of open anarchy at the state convention June 13 A four-way split is in the offing, and the groups are in order of strength, uncommitted delegates, Wallace delegates, McGovern delegates and Humphrey delegates. The uncommitted group contains unknown proportions of all the others. In Dallas, George Wallace’s backers came out on top with 142 delegates; uncommitted got 128; McGovern 67 and Humphrey 33. In the Dallas’ 16th senatorial district, the Wallaceites led and joined forces with the McGovern folk to take the chairmanship away from the Establishment conservative, Jack Henson, and give it to a McGovern backer, Kim Carpenter. The conventions in all four Dallas districts were rowdy, noisy and lasted more than eight hours. In Houston, Wallace again came out in the lead with about one-third of the Harris County delegates, but the McGovern forces took two senatorial districts away from conservatives. Of Harris County’s 509 votes, about 165 will go for Wallace, 140 for McGovern, 115 to Humphrey and the rest uncommitted. Senatorial District 15 took the honors in the bedlam category. The 10-hour convention included the ouster of conservative chairman Bettie ‘Finnan by Frank Breda, a black. The vote was 469 to 433. A fistfight broke out, the sheriff’s deputies had to be called and it took them quite a while to quell the mass altercation. The conservatives quit early so the liberals slipped through some very liberal resolutions at the end of the session. In District 13, the Wallace backers walked out and rumped. They’ll bring a challenge because the Humphrey and McGovern folk joined forces to keep Wallace delegates off the at-large slate. In Nueces County, where busing is a heavy issue, it took the convention three and a half hours just to get organized. Toufic Nicolas was finally elected chairman over Jason Luby, a Wallace supporter, 411-401. Chicanos threatened to rump, Political Intelligence seating arguments broke out, people making motions couldn’t be heard for the booing and sheriff’s deputies had to go down on the floor to keep order by the microphone. The chairman finally disconnected two floor mikes to shut off protests and at 1 a.m. the convention started work. Two of the country’s most imaginative fiction writers, Rowland Evans and Robert Novak, did a touching column on “the deepening agony of the regular Democrats” in Texas. “Caught between Wallace devotion and McGovern organization,” said Evans and Novak, “the Texas Democratic Establishment is being crushed. Just as its candidates were humiliated Saturday, so it lost control of an uncomfortably high number of precinct conventions that night.” There is no question but that George Wallace’s support in county and district conventions was a grass-roots devotion. The McGovern organization that so impressed E & N is big month old or less in the few places in Texas where it exists. A far more accurate reading of attitude of establishment conservatives here is in the May 14 “Cockpit” column in the San Antonio Express-News. The column noted that Bexar County conservative Dems, far from losing painful fights, didn’t even bother to participate. “After all,” said Cockpit, “Secretary Connally announced during the week that he had serious doubts that any of the present Demo candidates were fit for the job and he would have more to say about them later, hinting he may vote Republican. “First the party for Dick Nixon at the Connally ranch. Then the indifference to the conventions. Can it be that something like ‘Democrats for Nixon’ is just over the horizon?” It can indeed be. “Deepening agony” my foot: all the better to carry the state for Nixon, my dear. Cookbook George Farenthold, husband of Sissy, is, in addition to being a businessman, baron, linguist, World War II hero and conservative, also an excellent cook. The Observer has learned that at one point in the campaign, G. Farenthold was considering putting out a cookbook a la Nancy Barnes \(with nothing cribbed from Peg Bracken however: Julia Child is more couldn’t get his recipes together,” reported his daughter. The Texas AFL-C10, having no alternative, did go ahead and strongly recommend Bill Hobby in his runoff against Wayne Connally for the lieutenant governorship. Hobby himself geared up to meet labor half-way: he said he thinks public employees should have the right to unionize, but not to strike. “State employees ought to have the same bargaining rights as those in private industry,” he said. Is this the same Bill Hobby we all knew and loved during the late, great Newspaper Guild election at The Houston Post? The Daily Texan caught Wayne Connally’s student committee in a drastic misrepresentation of Connally’s position on the 18-year-old vote. Connally was one of the Texas Senate’s strongest opponents to lowering the voting age, but his student committee ran full page advertisement in the Texan stating that he had voted for enfranchising 18-year-olds. “It’s an honest mistake,” explained John Stratton, co-chairman of the U.T. Steering Committee for Wayne Connally. Ignorance Wayne Connally, in a masterly . display of ignorance, called a capitol press conference to denounce the “Roy Evans-Frances Farenthold” axis. Since Evans had just spent two days trying to convince the rest of the state’s labor leadership to plug Dolph Briscoe, Connally’s charges must have come as a considerable shock to Evans. Connally went on to make it clear that his strategy for the run off campaign is to brand Bill Hobby an L-I-B-E-R-A-L. Everything’s relative. Connally further went on to enlist himself in the Dolph Briscoe cause. Janey Briscoe uses salad oil in her Hollandaise sauce. Frank Erwin has contributed a fat chunk to John Tower’s campaign. P.O.P. Before the primaries, Gov. Preston Smith was using a sample ballot to show some of his campaign workers how he’d voted on his absentee ballot. “And then down here at the bottom,” continued the governor, “on the busing, I’m against busing so I voted against.” Uh, Governor … Not Cleaner Than Clean: But Stranger Than Strange. The Texas Star, that infallible publication, carried in its May 7 issue a nifty article on Uvalde hostess Janey Briscoe. . “This energetic lady,” said the Star, “received her Bachelor of Arts degree from The University \(the Star even upper cases May 26, 1972 11