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and lobby group. He is generally pro-worker, having lobbied the Legislature on behalf of the state’s law-enforcement officers. DeLord has twice run the Cops Against Clements campaign and Bill Clements has only run for governor twice. DeLord’s public positions on education are progressive. He is running a pro-equity campaign, making “quality education for all of the state’s children” his principal campaign issue. The Observer endorses Ron DeLord, anticipating that he will be the better candidate to run against Smith in November and a good member of the Senate in January. Chet Brooks was one of three Democratic Senators on whom all eyes were trained during the final days of the 1989 special session on workers’ comp. With the body closely divided on the issue, it was up to Brooks, fellow Chet, Chet Edwards, and Laredo Senator Judith Zaffirini to hold the line. None was a true believer in the proworker comp bill sponsored by Carl Parker and Kent Caperton. Therefore the three converts were under the most intense sort of pressure from the insurance and big-business lobby. Five days before the final vote, Dallas Times-Herald columnist Molly Ivins wrote that ,though the pro-business package had been voted down twice, working people in the state shouldn’t rest too easy with three days remaining in the session and their fate in the hands of “the Chets.” In the end, Ivins wrote, the Chets would bolt because “character is destiny.” Ivins couldn’t have been more prophetic. Brooks has been doing this for years but the fact that this time it occurred in a one-topic session, where the pressure and the house lights were on, let everybody in on it. For years Brooks has also been making a healthy living off the Senate, were members earn $7,200 a year. Recently the Austin American-Statesman did a story on Brooks’s use of his officeholder account to funnel money to his one-man public relations firm. Brooks is challenged by Galveston Rep. Lloyd Criss, whom the Observer endorses without reservation. In the House Criss has been excellent on labor issues and generally good on consumer issues. \(There was one worker-safety legislation and bills requiring the removal of asbestos from public buildings. Two sessions ago he faced a hostile House with a resolution against the Englishonly movement. He’s hitting Brooks where he is most vulnerable, on the ethics question. If that’s below the belt then Brooks had a high waistline. And Criss knows where to find the worst of Chet Brooks’s old bills and votes. He’s digging them out and offering them up for the public to examine. Demographics could also be on Criss’s side; the strong labor vote from the south side of the district is bound to benefit Criss, who represents Galveston and counts on the support of labor. Vote early and often for Lloyd Criss in the 1 1 th District. If Hugh Parmer’s departure from the Sen ate to run against Phil Gramm is bad news, the good news is that he might be replaced by Art Brender. Brender, a highly regarded civil rights lawyer from Fort Worth, won’t exactly replace Parmer, who has consistently been the best of the Senate. But Brender might come close. The Observer encourages voters in the state’s 12th Senatorial district to vote for and work for the election of Art Brender. He has earned the endorsement of every progressive group in the region and is easily the best of a four-candidate field, where his strongest opposition comes from former County Judge Mike Moncrief. Writing in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Kaye Northcott speculates that Moncrief might lose some of his voters who, because of their conservative nature, will be drawn into the Republican primary. Frank Tejeda is one of several senators who too often vote against the interests of their constituency. The recent workers ‘ comp fight provides an example. There was never a question about whether Tejeda would support the Bill Hobby pro-business bill or the pro-worker bill advanced by Parker and Caperton. Tejeda, who represents one of the largest working-class constituencies in the state, in San Antonio, signed on with the Hobby plan. \(The Parker-Caperton bills were the only ones that promised to reduce employers’ comp rates while protecting most Steve Price, in a primary race that includes four candidates. The Observer endorses Price in District 19. The toughest choice for progressives is in the Lower Rio Grande Valley District 27 where Brownsville Rep. Eddie Lucio and Edinburg Rep. Alex Moreno are trying to unseat incumbent Senator Hector Uribe. For progressives, Lucio doesn’t enter the picture. But the fight between Moreno and Uribe is a tough call. Uribe is a working-class diputado de la raza in every sense. He has always been close to Valley Interfaith, has been a leader in the House Mexican-American Caucus, and almost always votes right. Uribe is urbane and a little more distant from his constituency. But he always votes right, has an interest in education finance, and is the Senate sponsor of the Edgewood plaintiffs’ plan for equity in public-school finance. The race presents a difficult choice and if anything makes the difference, it is Moreno’s vote on workers’ comp. If it was a calculated attempt to bring in business contributions to a Senate campaign, it backfired. The chambers of commerce went with their lobbyist, Rep. Eddie Lucio, who has raised more money than Moreno. We’ll go with Uribe, who dug in and fought for worker’s rights in the Senate. We wish that Moreno had attempted the same in the house. Senate District 29 in El Paso presents a rare opportunity to replace a compromised and not terribly effective incumbent with a smart, principled pro-consumer challenger. Peggy Rosson is running against veteran El Paso Senator Tati Santiesteban. Santieste ban has so little to run on that he is attempting to paint Rosson as a utilities lackey, citing one vote she cast on the Public Utility Commission that he claims cost El Paso ratepayers some $60 million. Rosson, however, had no choice on that particular vote in which the utility complied with a requirement by which rates were automatically raised. El Pasoans would be wise to listen to Austin-based attorney Don Butler, who has made a career of representing cities and consumers before the Public Utility Commission: “No one on the commission ever demonstrated more concern for the public and more knowledge of the regulation process than Peggy Rosson. She was not only the fairest but the most knowledgeable of the regulation process.” Butler said that Mark White, who appointed Rosson, “was never properly appreciative of her ability and that was a reflection on his intelligence.” El Pasoans might also ask why their Sena tor is running an electric-rate-protest cam paign after his law firm had been retained and paid by El Paso Electric for years. And why Santiesteban voted for Bill Clements’s ap pointees to the Public Utility Commission, Bill Cassin and Marta Greytok \(both had established records clearly hostile to con sumers during the interim between appoint credible attempt to defeat them on the Senate floor. As to why El Paso County Judge Lu ther Jones didn’t retain Santiesteban’s law firm to fight the low-level waste dump in nearby Hudspeth County, it was probably because Jones recognized that Santiesteban had already allowed then-freshman Senator Judith Zaffirini to run over him with a bill locating the dump near El Paso, rather than in South Texas. Rosson would be a big im provement in the Senate, providing El Paso with the sort of knowledgeable and commit ted representation it now has in the House with Republican Rep. Jack Vowell. The Ob server endorses Peggy Rosson without reser vation. If endorsements were rated, this paragraph would be followed by five stars. L.D. East Dallas Printing Company Full Service Union Printing 211 S. Peak Dallas, Tx 75226 THE TEXAS OBSERVER 7