Monday, October 19, 2009

Kay sells her home in DC suburbs...

Kay has sold her house (link). Excerpt follows...

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison may be waffling about when to give up her powerful job, but a sign came this month that she's serious about leaving the nation's capital to focus on her run for Texas governor: a "sold" sign outside her suburban Washington home.

Tax records show that her 4,300-square-foot house in McLean, Va., sold for $1.4 million on Oct. 2. That's about $170,000 less than she and her husband, Ray Hutchison, paid for it in 2006 and nearly $400,000 less than the original asking price in August 2008.

The Hutchisons own a home valued at $2.7 million in Dallas' Preston Hollow neighborhood.

I wonder if this means she will actually go through with it and resign? I doubt she has spent a whole lot of time up there anyway lately with all the missed votes, and she will probably rent an apartment close to Capitol Hill or a convenient airport in the meantime.

Enrique Rangel has some thoughts on the Republicans all waiting in the wings (link). Excerpt follows...

The senator said also it bothers her the political plans of those who want to run for her seat are on hold until she steps down.

Well, for the four Republicans and two Democrats who want her Senate seat the uncertainty continues.

So far, the announced candidates are state Sen. Florence Shapiro of Plano, Railroad Commissioners Elizabeth Ames Jones and Michael Williams, as well as former Texas Secretary of State Roger Williams, all Republicans.

The Democratic hopefuls are former State Comptroller John Sharp and Houston Mayor Bill White.

Republican Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst was also widely mentioned as a possible candidate but perhaps because of the uncertainty last month he took himself out of the race by announcing he would seek re-election instead.

For Austin watchers, Dewhurst's decision was a no-brainer. With the month-long registration period for the Republican and Democratic primaries coming up in early December he had to decide between seeking a third term or joining the long list of hopefuls who want to succeed Hutchison.

If the senator steps down, Perry will have to appoint a temporary successor and call for a special election.

The last time something similar happened was in 1993 when Gov. Ann Richards appointed Bob Krueger to replace Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, whom President Clinton named Treasury secretary.

Although in the special election Hutchison and Krueger were the top vote-getters among 23 candidates, in the subsequent run-off Hutchison easily defeated Krueger.

But unlike today there was no uncertainty in 1993 because Bentsen resigned before joining the Clinton cabinet and there were no primaries or a general election coming up.

The political uncertainty today's Senate hopefuls are living confirms again that in politics timing plays a key role.

For now all they can do is continue waiting for Hutchison to resign while keeping a high profile.

Next Saturday, for example, all six candidates are expected to be in Frisco for a health care reform forum the Texas Medical Association is sponsoring.

But aside from that, there is little else they can do till Hutchison steps down and who knows when that will happen.

I am in fairly regular contact with someone associated with each of the names listed above, and I am starting to hear some real grumbling from each camp about Kay. Basically the less well known candidates are starting to think that her late timing might just hand the election over to the best funded candidate who happens to be David Dewhurst. Dewhurst himself is not all that happy either from what I am hearing if only because he has a little rich kid attitude about these things. Everyone is getting nervous and is tired of reading the tea leaves... are they doing all of this work positioning themselves for no apparent reason?

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