Page 14


. :4 ….. there were all these assassination attempts, or contemplation of them, against the heads of foreign governments. Do you think that actually shouldn’t have been brought out, for example? I wasn’t referring so much to that particular incident. Now I suppose I should state here that the three years I spent in Naval Intelligence strongly affect my views on the subject . . . 1953 to 1957 In the story in the Post it referred to McGovern, Bayh, and Talmadge, too, and said that about half of the losers in your opinion had brought it on themselves and hadn’t done much for the Democratic Party. Herman Talmadge, you could scarcely find a better example, his problems in his personal life, his looseness in his handling of political contributions, brought it on himself. . . . In the case of McGovern, a presidential candidate who carries one state out of 50 by definition is an embarassment to the party. I think it’s, you know, just about that simple. Okay. You said part of the problem is that the party has shot itself in the foot. “It gave in to the left” in the country. And the story quoted you on a gay liberDemocratic convention. You wanta expatiate on that any? Sure. Through a whole set of events, which if I can use the shorthand term “the McGovern rules” I shall, requiring delegates to party conventions at the state and national level to be selected according to a quota system there’s no question that both at the state level and at the national level the party has gotten to the left of the mainstream of American thought. Again I don’t think that’s a matter of controversy, that’s a matter of definition. You have the fact of a Republican President of the United States. You have the fact of a Republican Governor of Texas. Well do you think that was for example in the national case because Jimmy Carter was too left? I think the party. No, I don’t think Mr. Carter himself .. . But the party? Yeah. OK. Cactus Pryor had a funny remark in his column in the Dallas Times Herald a couple of days ago. He said that President Reagan’s group was considering a Texan whom he called Rep. Smith to be on the budget-cutting committee and the President’s people said, “Oh, no, no, he’s too conservative.” And they said, “too conservative?” And they said, “Yeah, he’s a Texas Democrat.” Which might be a predicate for a ques tion. Well, now, with Dolph Briscoe and Preston Smith and John Connally, would you say that the Texas party is too left? And yourself? Why has Clements won in a situation which does not at all follow the parallel with McGovern? I mean, in fact the Texas Democrats who have prevailed are very conservative. So how does that work out logically? Well, certainly the fact that there is a Republican governor, the first Republican governor in about 25 years Since Shivers. Yeah, correct. And the first in a hundred and some-odd years who was the Republican nominee and not also the Democratic nominee that tells you that a basic change has taken place. Yes, but does it follow that it’s because the Democrats are too liberal or might it be that they’re too much like the Republicans. I mean, if there’s very little to choose I ran into a friend of mine in a labor union from out in West Texas out here can you follow Democratic leaders if they’re so much like the Republicans? Where are you following ’em to?” Couldn’t that be an alternative interpretation? . . . Why, for example, have none of the conservative and moderate Democrats who ran against \(Sen. That’s a 20-year phenomenon. Same with Clements, being conservative, very conservative. Well, now, John Hill \(losyou’d say. So what’s the alternative here? If a moderate like John Hill loses to Clements, Speaker Clayton said to Mary Lenz in our interview with him [TO 4117181] that the thing to do is to be more conservative than the Republicans, I believe that’s what he said! Is that what follows? What’s going on here, is what I’m saying ideologically, I guess. \(The Lieutenant Governor thought a Take your time, please, governor. Yeah, I am. There is now a Democratic caucus in the Texas Senate. We have lunch about every other Wednesday. All the Democratic senators, including The two I’ve been to, Senator Meier was not present. And I don’t know whether an invitation was sent to him. But at any rate, John Rogers \(an Ausslide . . . it made a great impression on me. It was a graph of Democratic percentages in governors’ races for the last 20 years in Texas. . . . You have a line All Photographs of Lt. Gov. Hobby by Ronald Cortes where any Democratic candidate for governor gets roughly 80 to 85% of the vote in November. Then in the early sixties, there starts quite a precipitous drop. .. . It shows a fundamental change in Texas politics. Moving toward a two-party system. Right. Or moving toward the Republican Party, if you want to put it that way. It’s definitely moving toward two-party, and by definition that’s moving toward the Republican Party. There’s been a mild increase in the number of Republican legislators in the past few years. There will be an increase of Republican legislative strength as a result of redistricting. . . . You know when you start getting Republican House members from Bexar County and El Paso County. . . . Well: When Hector Uribe, the new senator from the Valley down there, by 20 votes there missed bein’ a runoff between two Republicans. You know, what huh?. . . . But why is this, Governor? Why has this been happening? Is it a reflection of the national liberalism of the Democratic Party impacting to the detriment of the Texas moderates and conservative Democrats, or is it that maybe the analysis is wrong? Yes, partly a reflection, no question about that. For the Democratic nomination in 1984, it looks like there’s an obvious division setting up between Mondale and Kennedy. What’s your disposition there, for either or for anyone else? THE TEXAS OBSERVER 9