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ment to his own belief that women should be treated equally. He played a dangerous game, though, attacking a recovering alcoholic as some kind of dope fiend, intimating she still had a drinking problem, casting dark warnings that she was surrounded by lesbians. Richards responded with a granny/bio commercial so banal she took to ridiculing it in the presence of producer Robert Squier. Richards, for her part, proved she could fight as dirty as your average man, although not as dirty as Jim Mattox. She trashed Mattox and the third major candidate in the Democratic contest, former Gov. Mark White. On the stump and in her TV commercials, she gave almost as good as she got. Egged on by Mattox, the press pressed the drug question in two televised debates which had to be among the worst ordeals Richards ever faced. She refused to say whether she had ever used drugs, and the answer proved difficult for many undecided voters to swallow. The question drove a wedge between Richards and the Austin press corps which may never be completely removed. Morris reports that newspapers went a little crazy along with Mattox on the drug issue. The book quotes Jane Hickie, a longtime associate of Richards, describing campaigns as going insane on a deadline. In the latest jargon, the spring campaign was dysfunctional. With full acknowledgement that she is oversimplifying, Morris describes the schism in the Richards primary campaign as between the mostly male political pros, who were hell-bent on winning, and her support group \(which included her children and the women who were her closest was her well-being. It was not a happy time. “A skilled debater and a willful woman, she had begun playing one staff person off against another and outside `experts’ against the staff. She would grill people relentlessly. Consultants were not always prepared to respond to her questions, and she was seldom satisfied with the answers they gave,” Morris writes. Bill Hobby put it plainly: “Her warmth and caring have tended to get lost in this campaign, much to Ann’s detriment.” But as Morris writes, “Richards turned out to be a stunningly resilient candidate and a great counter puncher, and both she and her campaign held together while her opponent’s collapsed. In the first war of attrition, White and Mattox self-destructed. In the second, Clayton Williams shot off the lower half of his body.” For most of the summer and fall, the press believed Richards was doomed. Williams outspent her two to one. He waltzed through the Republican primary beating three credible opponents without a runoff. While Richards was distant and uncommunicative with the press, Williams was open and accessible. His handlers repeatedly warned him to watch his tongue and monitor his thoughts and for the most part he did. The first major sign of trouble was when he told a rape joke at a spring cattle roundup. The next day the remarks were published nationwide. Despite that slipup and others, Williams led in the polls well into October and he seemed invincible to virtually everyone except Richards’ campaign staff. Mary Beth Rogers, a quiet, impeccably competent member of Richards’ inner circle, was brought in to run the general election campaign. She systematized money raising and tightened the volunteer structure. “Every day she had to gear up as though for war. But the last month was wholly engaging: the long-term planning was behind her, and wow, every time she did something, she could see its effects,” Morris writes. “What Edmund Wilson called ‘the shock of recognition’ came sometime around the first of October. … Rogers was sitting at her desk looking at the mailings, which were targeted to swing voters in about 23 counties, to senior citizens in East Texas, and to 60,000 women on the choice issue. She knew the media was solid. The money was coming in more easily. And suddenly she knew: this was going to work! Her level of tension was so high that she had to get up and leave her office. She walked around downtown Austin for about 45 minutes before she could go back inside. ‘I didn’t know we were going to win. I knew it was possible to win.’ After that, the daily fight was easier.” Squier gave Morris a more macho description of the impending victory, saying Richards set Williams up for errors, such as admitting he hadn’t had to pay any income tax in 1986. As Squier explained, “Ann Richards understood the transaction they were involved in and he didn’t. His handlers did, but Claytie expected to be able to do his thing the way he’d always done it. Ann took the campaign to him! She made him the issue. She broke through all the money, the ads, the hiding, the vacations….And there they were finally in the ring. He had on his ten-gallon hat and his boots, and nothing else. And she said, ‘OK, Claytie, let’s do it!’ And he was petrified! You could smell it at the end of the race: in the end, she unmanned him!’ ” In one of the supreme ironies of the race, Williams spent so much money he overexposed himself. According to Morris, the average Texan saw Williams in TV spots 90 times, while four times is considered saturation. The public came to think of him as the incumbent a full two months before the election, and by election day they were sick to death of him. Voters were in an anti-incumbent, anti-wealth mood. Late in the game, Richards found a populist issue in high insurance rates. Her negatives began to fall as Williams’ rose. As Morris reports, nearly half of the people voting for Richards made up their minds in the final month a quarter of them in the last week. Richards won every big city. In what was probably the largest gender gap vote in the state’s history, she won 61 percent of women’s vote statewide. Feinstein, the former mayor of San Francisco, lost by 270,000 votes in a state with almost twice the population of Texas. It didn’t have to be that way. Because of the size of the state, Feinstein abandoned constituency politics for a media campaign. She did no organizing, no get-out-the-vote effort. According to Morris, Feinstein spent 80 percent of her time raising money at an average of 25 events a week. In the end, she spent $19.5 million to Republican Sen. Pete Wilson’s $23.9 million. Where Richards received strong majorities from African Americans and Hispanics, Feinstein won only a slim majority from California blacks and Asians. Feinstein received only 53 percent of the Hispanic vote, compared to Richards’ 71 percent. Feinstein received support from only 52 percent of the Asian vote. Morris said the candidate could have done much better if she had worked to register minority voters and get them to the polls. In sad contrast to the successful coordinated campaign in Texas, the California Democratic Party registered only 200,000 voters. Feinstein did not receive the solid backing of pro-choice women as Richards did. Mon -is says that for Richards, “The pro-choice movement turned out to be the political equivalent of several hundred Cruise missiles.” The Texas Abortion Rights Action League alone raised $250,000 for Richards and shepherded 250,000 pro-choice voters to the polls. Richards’ campaign had well-nurtured grass roots in every Texas county. Feinstein was hampered by the fact that Wilson also was pro-choice. Where many Texas Republicaia women found Clayton Williams unpalatable, California Republican women were comfortable with Wilson. Feinstein had never been active in the women’s movement. “As mayor of San Francisco, furthermore, Feinstein had made 280odd appointments but had increased the percentage of women in jobs at her disposal by only 1 percent,” Morris reports. /n the end, Richards was simply a better politician, a better communicator and more in tune with her voters than Feinstein. Morris holds out hope that Feinstein will learn from her mistakes. The author ends the book with a prediction that the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings will anger and inspire women candidates and voters this year. As it turns out, Dianne Feinstein is one of the women politicians playing the Thomas card. She is running for the U.S. Senate. In fact, for the first time in its history, there are two California Senate seats open in a single year. Feinstein is running for the remainder of Pete Wilson’s Senate term. Fellow Democrat Barbara Boxer is running to succeed retiring Sen. 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