POLITICAL INTELLIGENCE Cong. Jim Collins says he is “really amazed” that a poll he commissioned revealed that only 15.1% of Texas voters believe Sen. Lloyd Bentsen is a liberal. “When only 15% of the people say Bentsen is a liberal, we have a real education job to do,” Collins said. He also said he is willing to spend up to $4 million to “educate” the voters. J/1 Speaking of money, it was less than 10 years ago that $3.5 million, the amount Bill Clements raised in Houston recently, would have financed the campaigns of all of Texas’ gubernatorial candidates. And more about money: Common Cause director John Hildreth reports that lobbyists in Texas spent more than $1 million in the first eight months of 1981. That adds up to $5,500 per legislator. Ninety-two % of that amount was for entertainment. Fort Worth lawyer Dee Kelly will head Gov. Bill Clements’ drive to attract Democrdtic and independent voters in the November general election even though he supported Mark White in his 1978 race for attorney general and in this year’s Democratic gubernatorial primary. Kelly is the lawyer for Fort Worth oilman PerryBass, one of Clements’ key financial backers and chairman of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commision. When in his early 20’s, Kelly served four years as an assistant to the late Sam Rayburn and still considers himself a “Rayburn Democrat,” despite the fact that he hasn’t voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since Lyndon Johnson in 1964. And who is the real George Strake? In a recent debate in Houston with Lt. Governor Bill Hobby, Republican candidate Strake explained that he is a man who supports President Reagan, Gov. Clements, Cong. Phil Gramm, “and admires the heck out of John Wayne.” Harris County sheriff Jack Heard, who lost to Kathy Whitmire partly because he couldn’t attract Republican support, voted in the Republican primary this year, apparently positioning himself for another run next year in the mayor’s race. Nick Benton, a native of California who moved to Houston a year and a half ago, will oppose state Democratic party chairman Bob Slagle at the party’s Sept. 10-17 convention in Dallas. Benton, in a series of press conferences around the state recently, charged that Slagle has allowed the Texas party to be taken over by a “Jerry Brown, genocidalist, liberal, left-wing faction.” Slagle said he didn’t know any genocidalists in the Texas Democratic Party. Benton was a co-director of Lyndon LaRouche’s organization, now known as the Democratic National Policy Committee, when LaRouche ran for President in 1978. LaRouche’s organization, best known as the group at airports handing out “Feed Jane Fonda to the Whales” bumper stickers, is occasionally confused with the Democratic National Committee. LaRouche supporters are apparently planning an attempted takeover of party machinery for LaRouche. A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision against an at-large election system in Georgia may make it easier for blacks and other minorities in Texas to prove that at-large systems in their corn Farmworkers Emergency Services, told the Observer. Lansford was also unaware there were any farmworkers in the Panhandle. “I don’t know what a lot of them would be doing up there right now,” he said. “Most of the work is done by combines, isn’t it? I’m not aware of any problems, sure not aware.” \(Farmworkers are in the Panhandle this time of year for a variety of jobs. They do what the farmers call “chopping cotton,” clearing fields of weeds to prepare them for the later mechanized harvest; they pick onions and cucumbers by hand; and they work The USDA also suggested that MET contact Second Harvest in Phoenix, Arizona, an organization Craddock described as a “central focal point for food banks.” Defensa, a Muleshoe-based farrnworker assistance group, had already tried the Phoenix food bank, but was told that Second Harvest only distributed food to other food banks. Defensa was referred to a San Antonio food “The Miracle of the KILLER BEES” by Robert Heard. Honey Hill Publishing Co., 1022 Bonham Terrace, Austin, Texas 78704, $7.95 plus $1.03 tax and shipping. bank, but the San Antonio bank claimed to have barely enough food for San Antonio. Food, however, is not the biggest problem, according to Defensa president Juan Chavez. “Some food vouchers are being provided by MET and other programs,” he explained. “But people are abandoned in their cars. What is needed more is money for the migrants to either continue their search for work, to continue their travels, or money for them to get gasoline to return home.” Chavez reported that seven families stayed in the small Defensa office in Muleshoe, hanging up blankets to mark off sleeping quarters. Another three families stayed at another center and two families camped under the trees in the yard. According to C&avez, the same thing was happening in Abernathy, Petersburg, Dimmitt, and Hereford. “Many of the people want to return home,” Chavez said. “Some of them say that there is nothing to return home to there is no work there now and they just want a little help to keep going.” The problem, Chavez pointed out, is that all of this started some four to five weeks ago. “It is only now that organizations are beginning to respond.” The MET organization is using emer gency and nutritional assistance funds originally allocated for the rest of the fiscal year, but MET is reluctant to use all its funds for fear of an emergency somewhere else in the state. MET is trying to get its funding agency, the U.S. Department of Labor, to supplement MET’s available resources. “If we spent all of the money we had left,” Bryan Craddock points out, “we wouldn’t even cover half of the need here, and we’d leave the rest of the farmworkers in the state vulnerable.” “It’s likely,” AFOP director Diane Mull points out, “that farmworkers will get little or no response at this point. About the only hope that USDA gave farmworkers was that if the governor would request that USDA do something, they would forward the state food commodities. It would have to be a state suggestion.” “We tend to forget,” Mull said, “that when a disaster strikes and some 8400 farmworkers jobs are lost, they will either return home without any money which is bound to affect the economy there or, if they can’t get any transportation money to leave Texas, they will not continue to other places that are expecting someone to show up to harvest the crops which will certainly affect the economy there.” 12 JULY 23, 1982
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