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Richards to be going up against somebody that all of a sudden is on the other side, And when you look to someone’s financial backing, you also know a lot about what kind of person he is. You’ll look and find powerful interest groups, major oil companies, putting a lot of money into John Sharp becatise they think that he’s their guy. And I think they’re right. You don’t fool them very often. The Railroad Commission was initially a populist invention. It hasn’t acted like one in quite a number of years. It’s like most regulatory agencies, not just in Texas, that become captives of the industries that they’re supposed to regulate. It has not had a history of being a consumer agency. All through the ’30s and the ’40s and the ’50s and even in the ’60s, up until the embargo, the commission acted as the protector of the independent and smaller producers and the royalty owners and the landowners against the potential abuse by the majors and the control of the majors. That all became confused and muddled with the embargo when it became us against them, their oil against our oil. What a lot of people forget is that “us” is the independent producer and “them” is sometimes the Exxons and the Mobils and the Gulfs of the world. They are the ones who produce, transport, refine, and sell all the oil from the Middle East. Their interests do not necessarily coincide with our security interests or our energy interests. That’s where I believe the line should be redrawn: independent domestic production versus the multinationals. Obviously if they had their way, there’d just be a handful of oil producers in the world as they continue to gobble each other up. They would dictate the terms of both exploration and production and cost. I would not want to see such a thing. El \( POLITICAL INTELLIGENCE Second . Best i/ U.S. Senator Phil Gramm has been stumping the state in an effort to convince voters that the Gramm-Rudman budget balancing act is a silk purse. During a visit to El Paso, Gramm allowed how he was not discouraged by the ruling by federal judges that part of the Gramm-Rudman act was unconstitutional. He said a “fallback” provision in the act would still be okay to work with. By way of analogy, Gramm told the El Paso Times, “I might have preferred Sophia Loren for a wife, but I like the one I’ve got.” Undoubtedly, had he been married to Sophia Loren, Gramm would have shown her face in 1984 television campaign commercials, even if she is Italian. You may remember Gramm’s 1984 All-American family commercial, in which we only saw Wendy Gramm’s back, while the faces of their two partAsian sons are hidden in the shadows of large-billed caps. vr Both Sen. Phil Gramm and House Majority Leader Jim Wright lead the pack in the amount of funds received from political action committees reports show. In the 1983-84 races, Gramm received more money from PACs than any other senator, with $1.5 million. He had the distinction of being ranked fourth 1984 senate victory. He also was ranked special House election. Lloyd Doggett, Gramm’s Democratic opponent for the senate, ranked fifth on Political Intelligence is reported by Beau Barton, Ron Cesar, and Ellen Williams. the campaign contribution list \($6.03 Wright’s $512,898 in PAC money and $1.3 million total raised in 1985 led all 435 House members in both categories. At the end of 1985, he also had more cash on hand: $1 million. He also trailing top-spending U.S. Rep. Jack Kemp, R-N.Y., who was the only other congressman to raise more than $1 million in 1985. Other top-raising Texans in 1985 include Reps. Steve Bartlett, R-Dallas, Martin Frost, D-Dallas, and Mac Sweeney, R-Wharton, all of whom placed among the top ten House members in total receipts. Prayerful v On the frontiers of leadership last month were Speaker of the Texas House Gib Lewis and Rep. Stan Schlueter of Killeen. Shortly after Comptroller Bob Bullock warned in a Capitol press conference that “We can no longer depend on the oil and gas industry to finance state government,” Lewis and Schlueter were quoted in the papers addressing the current state budget crunch. Schlueter, the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, refused to speculate on alternative revenue raising measures: “I wouldn’t even start talking about that now. What I would do between now and January is pray for a miracle and hope the price of oil goes up and the economy improves.” Lewis: “If we had a special session, I predict we’re not going to pass a tax bill. We’ll just have 30 days of sitting around, twiddling our thumbs.” g/ Speaker Lewis won’t be twiddling his thumbs now that he faces opposition from the Republicans in his Tarrant County re-election race. Right-wing maven Fran Chiles reportedly talked one K. Wayne Lee into making the race against Lewis, a conservative Democrat. Some Democrats reacted with glee, imagining the Speaker in the position now to have to seek support from traditional Democratic bases. Columnist Molly Ivins observed, “There were some union people up that way who were just knocked whomper-jawed when the Speak called.” 1/ Gib has a plan. Speaking to reporters on February 14 about the state budget crunch, House Speaker Gib Lewis said he didn’t think it would necessitate laying off state workers. Instead, he said the state employee squeeze could be solved through “employee nutrition.” That’s when employees retire or die off replaced. po Former San Antonio City Councilperson Van Archer, running for Tom Loeffler’s congressional seat in the Republican primary, supports putting U.S. military troops along the Rio Grande in order to stem illegal immigration. In a speech to the Noon Lions Club of San Angelo, Archer criticized “liberal-oriented columnists” and “Hispanic sources” for opposing such solutions. Archer has picked up an unlikely supporter in his quest for Congress former San Antonio City Attorney Jane Macon. She’s now working for the San Antonio office of Fulbright Jaworski and has contributed $1,000 to Archer’s campaign, also serving on his steering committee. Macon, a leader of the Texas Women’s Political Caucus, is generally credited with bringing the National Women’s Political Caucus convention to San Antonio in 1984. At the time, thenCouncilperson Archer called the convention “a couple of hundred hairylegged women.” THE TEXAS OBSERVER 17