Bill White slams Gov Perry on the Texas Emerging Tech Fund, which Perry doesn’t even solely control

04 Oct

Bill White’s getting desperate.  Today he’s out slamming how Gov. Perry has run the Texas Emerging Technology Fund, under the mistaken impression that the Governor has total control of it.

The Dallas Morning News reported Sunday the state has given more than $16 million to high-tech startups whose investors are big donors to Perry. He is seeking an unprecedented third four-year term in the Nov. 2 election.

White mocked a Perry campaign ad that proclaims Texas as open for business. The ad refers to the state’s favorable business climate, but White says only Perry supporters are able to benefit under the system.

“For those companies that open pockets with campaign contributions, indeed the governor’s office is open for business,” he said.

Har de har.  White should join his insult comic pal Barack Obama and take their two-man show on the road.  As long it keeps both out of Texas.  What the story doesn’t say is that there’s any reason to think the management of the fund is corrupt.  That’s because there’s no evidence of that.  It does say something that’s inconvenient to White’s argument.

Perry, the lieutenant governor and speaker of the Texas House decide together who receives the grants through the Texas Emerging Technology Fund, which was created in 2005. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who presides over the Texas Senate, said Sunday he hadn’t been lobbied by Perry’s office or by House Speaker Joe Straus in the decision making process.

Eight companies out of 120 that got funds had some kind of tie to the Governor.  That’s not a high percentage, nor is it evidence of anything but the fact that the Governor has some fairly high rolling contacts.  One might expect that of a Governor who has been in office for 10 years, and who governs a state the size of France with the 15th largest economy in the world.  In other words, this is hardly a bombshell.

But – the White attack has given me the opportunity to bring up BTEC.  That’s a deal where Mayor Bill White did have mucho control and even went to bat for a company that he had a financial interest in.  And he went to bat for them in the midst of hurricane relief.  And then they rewarded him.  The AP’s been all over this story all summer long.

While Houston’s mayor, Bill White got involved in a billing dispute between an area agency and a company he recommended to help the region recover from Hurricane Rita, playing a greater role in the transaction than previously acknowledged, according to documents and interviews with those involved.

White, now the Democratic nominee for Texas governor, was invited five months after the dispute was settled to invest $1 million in the privately held company. He has reported more than $500,000 in earnings on that investment.

White’s recalling of the tale has shifted as new facts have come to light.  In other words, he shapeshifting to try to match what the reporters dig up, and not shooting straight with Texans.

Be not fooled by the man who could pass for Gollum’s twin: Texas really is open for business.  Gov. Perry really has operated on the up and up to bring more and more businesses to Texas, a fact that Bill White doesn’t like.  If he had his druthers, Bill White would close down the enterprise funds, jack up our taxes and bring about the cap and trade policies that he tried to help Obama sell.

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Posted by on October 4, 2010 in bill white, politics


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