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nering 43 percent of the vote to Bush’s 32 percent. The treasurer and agriculture commissioner races were also difficult for pollsters to pin down. The Houston Chronicle Poll, conducted by University of Houston political science professor Richard Murray between October 20 and 30, was the only one to predict that the two Hightowers of the Democratic Party were in for a much tougher race than either candidate had anticipated. Earlier polls had the Democratic candidates ahead by a comfortable margin. The final Texas Poll actually reported that Jim Hightower had a 12-point lead over his opponent, Rick Perry. Neither the Eppstein nor the Gallup groups released statistics for the race. In actuality, Kay Bailey Hutchison won over Nikki Van Hightower by a 3.3 percent margin. Perry edged out Jim Hightower, 49.1 percent to 47.9 percent of the votes. Pollsters say the turning point for the commissioner of agriculture came after Perry launched his negative TV campaign late in the season, which was unanswered by Hightower. In other races, all major polls accurately predicted the outcome of the lieutenant governor and attorney general contests, but reported different point spreads from nine to 15 points in the former, and from two to 13 in the latter. The actual differences were six points in the lieutenant governor’s race and seven in the AG matchup. How do the pollsters explain the discrepancies among the major polls? For one thing, the timing of a poll during a volatile race is critical; for the gubernatorial race, the political climate was transformed between August and November. Bryan Eppstein, of the Eppstein poll, also reasons that the polls will get radically different results by varying the polling samples and survey models. For instance, the Texas Poll interviewed 622 people; the Eppstein poll, 1206. Also, what is said to the respondents during the polling process for example, mentioning the candidates’ party affiliations or whether she is an incumbent can influence the answers. All in all, skeptics of the polls continue to have plenty of reasons to stay skeptical. -JENNIFER WONG Jennifer Wong is an Observer editorial intern. Student Vote: Don’t Trust Anyone Under 30 Efforts to rouse the most apathetic voter group those aged 18 to 24 apparently paid off in Texas, where a national foundation tested a pilot program that may go nationwide in 1992. On the two largest college campuses, the student vote turned out in relatively large numbers. And Clayton Williams was the principal beneficiary. The Vote America Foundation \(the folks used Austin as a test market for its project to prod younger voters to the polls. “The point of the program in Austin was to test a program that could be run by someone other than ourselves,” said Vote America’s assistant program director, Rick Powell. “We wanted to set up a turnkey voter registration program. Someone organizing this in Dallas or New York or Chicago or Peoria wouldn’t need much money.” Vote America joined forces with county workers, newspapers, and students in the city’s five colleges, bringing student voter registration from 37,000 to about 45,000 in Travis County. According to Chris Bjornson, who organizes voter registration for the county, the effort involved school districts and student governments throughout the area, at a cost of about 69 cents per voter. Bjornson said “no excuses” absentee voting which lets people vote before the election even if they plan to be in town made it easier to get students out to vote. “It’s right there, and it’s on campus,” he said. “When it’s off campus, it’s a lot harder. The city elections prove that.” The two precincts in Austin made up entirely of students posted a turnout of 55 percent and 49.6 percent, compared with 19 percent and 25 percent in the 1986 gubernatorial election. However, those who viewed the University of Texas as a liberal bastion had better get hip to the times: Clayton Williams swamped Ann Richards in both student boxes, taking 71.5 percent and 62.5 percent of the vote. Powell also credits liberal \(in terms of tee voting for increasing student voting. “In states like Texas and North Carolina, which have progressive voting laws, student voting increases,” he said. “In some states like Virginia, you have to prove your car was registered there, you have to prove you paid income taxes there, there’s a lot of obstacles to students voting.” The issues at stake in the election may have given some students the final push they needed on Election Day. Both gubernatorial candidates supported adding students to university boards of regents, and Clayton Williams unveiled a plan to provide free college tuition to qualified students. One plank of that plan a proposal for drugtesting of students and faculty spurred a few students to vote, as well. At Texas A&M, Williams exploited his Aggie roots and got a turnout of about 50 percent in the precincts dominated by A&M students. Those precincts broke about three to one for Williams, but the editor of the A&M newspaper said Ann Richards supporters mobilized as well. “You would think you’d think just hear a lot of Williams propaganda,” said Cindy McMillan. “But the Richards supporters felt they had such an obstacle to overcome that they were proba bly more active than they would have been if Williams had not been an alumnus.” Student voting in Texas is far from spectacular well short of 50 percent overall. But in a country where student voting averages 20 percent nationwide, Texans scored well on the curve. And at the two flagship universities, at least, Clayton Williams got extra credit. KEVIN MCHARGUE Kevin McHargue is editor of’The Daily Texan. Endorsements: Candidates and The Paper Chase Are newspaper endorsements of candidates worth the paper they’re printed on? The results of the 1990 elections suggest that they are since there is a correlation between endorsements of major newspapers and voters’ choices. Voters switched back and forth between parties as they went down the ballot, starting in the Republican column with Phil Gramm, jumping back to the Democrats’ candidates for Congress, governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, and comptroller, then returning to the Republicans to vote for chief justice, agriculture commissioner, and treasurer. Since party affiliation no longer seems to guide a majority bloc of voters, and the increasingly negative campaign ads on television turned many off, it could be that they looked to the newspapers for guidance. What follows is a list of endorsements by selected newspapers in selected state races. The list should give readers an idea of the editorial inclinations of the state’s print media outlets. In the governor’s race, Ann Richards received endorsements from the following newspapers: The Austin American-Statesman, Corpus Christi Caller-Times, Dallas TimesHerald, Edinburg Daily Review, El Paso Herald-Post, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Chronicle, San Angelo Times, San Antonio Light, San Antonio ExpressNews, and Waco Tribune-Herald. The following papers supported Clayton Williams: The Dallas Morning News, Houston Post, and Victoria Advocate. For U.S. senator, only two major newspapers failed to endorse the victor, incumbent Republican Phil Gramm: The Austin American-Statesman and The Edinburg Daily Review endorsed Democratic state Senator Hugh Parmer. At the same time, all major newspapers endorsed Bob Bullock for the lieutenant governor’s seat, except for the Dallas Morning News, which supported Republican Rob . Mosbacher Jr. All major newspapers except one endorsed Dan Morales, the winning Democrat, for attorney general. The sole exception was The Houston Post, one of the two daily papers THE TEXAS OBSERVER 21