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Gonzalez to Washington and put him up in the Johnsons’ Washington home. At the dinner Gonzalez was seated at a table with Chief Justice Earl Warren. Later that night Horace Busby, a Johnson aide, badgered Gonzalez about how he was going to go on a bill pending in Austin to change the dates of the Texas Democratic primaries, but Gonzalez didn’t know what he was talking about and Johnson bade Busby leave him be. That fall the Kennedys found Gonzalez apparently preempted by the Johnson candidacy. On Oct. 19, in Austin, Robert F. Kennedy asked Gonzalez how it looked for his brother in Texas “We want to know your thinking.” Gonzalez replied by asking what RFK would think about it “if I were to go to Massachusetts and ask you, ‘How do you think Lyndon Johnson will run in Massachusetts?’ ” RFK looked at him closely, said, “I get it. Thank you very much,” and left. Pena and Sutton were leaders in the only large liberal delegation in the spring 1960 state Democratic convention, which Johnson hoped to carry for his candidacy without a bruising split. Mrs. R. D. Randolph, who was the Democratic national committeewoman from Texas, a number of other Texas liberals, and the Texas Observer were opposing Johnson for the nomination. Gonzalez now played a part in collapsing what might have been a noteworthy liberals’ rump convention against Johnson into a minor walk-out. Gonzalez says Solis told him Peria was committing himself, with Mrs. Randolph, against Johnson, so Gonzalez called Pena and said, “That’s fine, but you don’t have to commit suicide. I respect Mrs. Randolph why don’t you get commitments from the guy for the liberals?” “I felt we were gonna walk, and I felt we should have walked out,” Pena says. But at 5:30 the morning of the convention he was awakened by a call from Johnson, inviting him to a meeting an hour later. When Peria arrived he concluded at once that Sutton, who was there ahead of him, “had already been given the Lyndon Johnson treatment.” Solis later told Gonzalez that Johnson, still in a kimono, put his arm around Pena and said to him, “Mr. Piria, you’re a great leader of your people. I’m counting on you.” Sutton told Johnson, “I play politics practical. What do we get?” Johnson asked Solis, “What about you. I want to know what you want?” Nothing for himself, Solis said, but his friend was Henry Gonzalez, and “Down the line I want to know that you’ll help Henry.” “Anytime I can help youall,” the Senate Majority Leader told Solis, “I’ll be there with money, marbles, and chalk.” Turning then to Pena, Johnson asked him, “And what do you want?” Twenty years later Pena remembers the question vividly. “I want a mexicano delegate to the national convention,” he replied. “I want someone to sit on the platform committee who will go with the civil rights program.” Johnson made Pena a delegate Sutton, too and promised civil rights plank. “I told G.J., ‘We sold out,’ ” Pena says ruefully. “Well, I had to stay with the organization. My inclination was to walk out.” Without San Antonio or labor, the liberals’ bolt became a token and Johnson trundled into the national convention in Los Angeles with his home-state delegation solidly behind him. Back in Texas, Henry Gonzalez tucked into his political wallet an IOU from the man who was to become the next Vice President. A right-wing Democrat was running against Gonzalez calling him a lackey of Jimmy Hoffa and his “labor goons,” but got nowhere, leaving Gonzalez free to turn to the national election. RFK and Lawrence O’Brien, conferring with Gonzalez in Kansas City, asked how John Kennedy could carry Texas with Johnson and U.S. Sen. Ralph Yarborough feuding. Gonzalez, predicting Johnson would campaign for himself and Yar borough could hardly go only for Kennedy on the KennedyJohnson ticket, said the Democrats would take the state even if they lost North Texas and Harris County 3-2, because with West Side precincts going eightand nine-to-one for Kennedy, Bexar would go Democratic big. Although Gonzalez had a Republican opponent, he campaigned for Kennedy-Johnson in eleven states. As Kennedy beat Nixon in San Antonio by 12,000 votes, Gonzalez won by 18,000. Maverick How did it happen that the two leading San Antonio liberals of the period, Gonzalez and Maury Maverick, Jr., both ran in the special election to succeed Johnson in the U.S. Senate? In the 71-candidate race the highest vote-getter would win, but anyone could see at once that with the statewide liberal vote splitting between the two San Antonians, neither had a chance. People tended to blame Maverick on the plausible grounds that Gonzalez announced on Dec. 3 and Maverick on Dec. 21. Gonzalez believes Johnson had a hand in getting Maverick in. “I went to Maury three times,” Gonzalez said. “I knew if Maury got in, well, hell.” He recalls Maverick told him, ” ‘If I had somebody say they’d put in $100,000 or some organized group . . . I don’t know.’ That’s how likely it would be, he was saying.”* On that basis, Gonzalez announced. Gonzalez believes organized labor in Texas guaranteed Maverick its endorsement in advance of his filing and could do this because Johnson had wired it up through Jerry Holleman, the close Johnson backer who had been president of the Texas AFL-CIO and was to become a high official in the Department of Labor in the Kennedy administration. “Lyndon Johnson figured it out,” Gonzalez says. “He wasn’t dumb.” After labor did endorse Maverick, Hiram Moon, a leader in the Texas UAW, told Gonzalez that UAW national president Walter Reuther had told him that “Mr. Reuther got a call from Mr. Jerry Holleman, and we were ordered.” This was the election that sent Republican John Tower of Wichita Falls to the Senate for the next 20 years. Johnson would not have wanted that, but he probably did prefer either conservative Democrat William Blakley, the short-term incumbent, or moderate Rep. Jim Wright of Fort Worth to either of the San Antonians. But Gonzalez’ theory of Johnson’s role may well be mistaken. In any case it illustrates the way people, knowing Johnson was devious and powerful, thought he was behind everything omnipolitical. “After I announced,” Maverick says, “Congressman Jack Brooks called me from Washington and said, ‘Lyndon wants you out of the race.’ Brooks quoted Johnson to me, ‘You’re gonna hurt yourself running. You’re not gonna do any good.’ I thought Johnson was trying to help Bill Blakley. Jack almost twisted it off in me, went on for 15 or 20 minutes. It was very depressing to have the vice president of the United States telling you that. Took some balls to keep running after the vice president said no . . . . It almost got me outa the race.” And, Maverick adds, he had to fight for the labor endorsement. He thinks it’s quite possible that Walter Reuther did help *In 1961 Gonzalez said that before he announced on Dec. 3, Maverick told him by letter than if he ran Maverick would be for him unless Maverick ran himself, but that after Gonzalez had announced Maverick indicated he favored U.S. Rep. Jim Wright ahead of Gonzalez. On Dec. 14, Gonzalez said, he told Maverick he would withdraw if Maverick was going to run, but Maverick said he didn’t know if he would, but didn’t think so. Maverick said it stuck in his mind that Gonzalez had said if Maury did run, he, Henry, would get out of the race, that he had only announced to be sure a liberal was running. But Gonzalez had Pena call Maverick and tell him he had to know by that Saturday. Saturday passed, and Maverick didn’t tell him. The ensuing week Maverick, without first telling Gonzalez, announced. And so they both ran. [Obs., Jan. 28, Feb. 4, 1961.] THE TEXAS OBSERVER 5