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Getting turned on Liberal Democrats got themselves all roused up and ready to fight in 1980 at a statewide meeting of Democratic national committeewoman Billie Carr’s “Texas Democrats” group on September 29. What’s getting everyone so heated up is the mounting evidence that Texas is really becoming a twoparty state and the progressive forces’ moment has arrived. The growing prospect of a full-scale Teddy Kennedy presidential candidacy generates a lot of excitement, of course, but there is much awareness that the chance to elect a decent Legislature and take a Railroad Commission seat is of surpassing importance in Texas politics. So they all got together in Austin to hold hands and discuss how not to blow it. State Rep. John Bryant of Dallas was well-received with a speech calling for the banishment from the Legislature of “so-called conservatives” who “hide behind phony labels”and he drew a round of applause when he applied his own label to the bunch he fought all last session: “go-along-to-get-along-pork barreling-lobby-moochers.” He also asserted that nothing, not even the presidential election, is more important to Texas than the legislative and congressional redistricting to be done by the 67th Legislature elected next year. Bryant didn’t mention his budding race for speaker of the House, but Observer publisher Ronnie Dugger, who followed him to the platform, did. Dugger also echoed Bryant’s sentiments about redistricting, the point of which, he said, will be to get together with the Republicans to redraw the lines so that all the conservative Democrats will, by 1983, be either Republicans or private citizens. But the main point of Dugger’s address was a plea for the reconstruction of a strong progressive coalition in the Democratic Party, a call to arms he also makes in this issue of the Observer \(see The only standing ovation of the day went to former Observer editor Jim Hightowera real Hightower stemwinder has to be seen and heard to be believed, and he was in reasonably good form. Jim claimed to be “on the precipice” of announcing his candidacy for the Railroad Commission. \(This was no lie, since he has already announced that he will announce it on the steps of the new RRC building in Austin on October 8. At that time, he will reveal to the world which of the two incumbents, John Poerner or Jim Nugent, he will try to unseat. From. there he’ll take off on a death-defying tour of about 20 Texas cities in five days to announce the same Among the other politicos who showed up were Land Commissioner Bob Armstrong and a bunch of legislators and SDEC members. Among those who didn’t were Bob Bullock and John Hill. The other main business of the day \(besides the post-meeting beer-sipping at ous presidential campaigns in Texas. Armstrong had the unfortunate task of telling this largely uninterestedgroup all about Jimmy Carter’s effort to be reelected. There doesn’t seem to be much going on here yetno one’s in charge and there’s no precinct work to speak of. But Armstrong allowed as how he’s very impressed with the record of the Carter-Mondale administration. Joe Siff, who is equally, if not more so, impressed with the record of the Jerry Brown administration in California, reported on that campaign. He felt the need to explain that the governor “is not a kook, is not a flake.” Then the Kennedy folks took over. There are, by now, organized committees working for Teddy in most parts of the streets with petitions asking him to run. They’re also registering voters. Much earlier in the day, Dallasite Ken Gjemre had tried to get the group to remove the presidential campaign reports from the day’s agenda. He argued that electing a progressive Legislature and winning a Railroad Commission seat are too important for the Texas Democrats to let “fratricide over presidential politics” disrupt their efforts. There was no chance this group was going to listen to his pleapresidential politics, after all, were what an awful lot of them were there forbut there also is little danger there’ll be any fratricide. An unscientific poll of attendees’ preferences revealed for certain what most already knew: two-thirds of them are for Kennedy. Carter drew 15 percent of the votes from the 122 respondents, Mondale 7 percent, and Brown only 3 percent. Billie Carr also drew one vote, and Malcolm McNeil, who tabulated the questionnaires, solemnly assured the crowd that the one in question was not in Billie’s handwriting. classified FREEWHEELING BICYCLES. 2404 San Gabriel, Austin. For whatever your bicycle needs. BOOK-HUNTING? No obligation search for rare or out-of-print books. Ruth and John River Hills Road, Austin 78746. JOIN THE ACLU. Membership $20. Texas Civil Liberties Union, 600 West 7th, Austin 78701. AMSTERDAM CANTOS Y POEMAS PISTOS by Ricardo Sanchez, Texas and America’s outstanding Chicano poet. The Chicano mind/spiiit encountering Europe. In English and Spanish. Available Sept. 1979. $3.50 paper. Place of Herons Press, Box 1952, Austin 78768. Write for our list. WOMEN’S BOOKS ‘& RECORDS. Send SASE for annotated catalog. Common Woman ‘Book Service, 1510-A San Antonio, Austin 78701. NEED TEE-SHIRTS? Call Jim Walls at AusQuick service at competitive prices. COOPERATIVES. Food, buying clubs, housing. 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