Dukes, Thompson, and Something About Glass Houses

Latest attack by HD 46 incumbent on challenger concentrates on issues of perceived weakness in her own campaign.

The Democratic primary in House District 46 between incumbent Dawnna Dukes and challenger Brian Thompson has been a vitriolic ground game over cash and influence. This morning, Dukes' campaign manager Colin Strother sent out an angrily-worded press release that sounded like it was meant to be a killer blow. In it, he accused Thompson of "selling out" because of $48,588.25 in campaign contributions from attorney Steve Mostyn. This, Strother writes, means that 51% of the money Thompson raised and reported in his latest campaign finance filing came from a "mega-rich Houston trial lawyer." While the number is right, Strother omits to mention that this was actually payment-in-kind, since Mostyn has been paying for Thompson's anti-Dukes TV ads, and getting them a lot of air-time.

Strother may also regret opening up the campaign finance can of worms, since his own candidate's latest filing is knee-deep in contributions from business PACs and even a few lawyers (including $250 from the Houston-based Baker Botts Amicus Fund,) plus the last-minute transfusion of $24,000 from GOP sugar-daddy Bob Perry.

This also comes the day after the Dukes campaign proudly proclaimed that they had been endorsed by TEXPAC, the Texas Medical Association's PAC. The same group has also endorsed her fellow Democrat reps Kevin Bailey and Aaron Pena, both of whom have been called Craddick Ds. Not so helpful when Dukes is trying to distance herself from the speaker controversy. UPDATE - As one eagle-eyed reader noted, they also endorsed noted anti-Craddick GOPer Byron Cook, and the award-winning Pat Haggerty (he of the end-of-session walk-out.)

Got something to say? The Chronicle welcomes opinion pieces on any topic from the community. Submit yours now at austinchronicle.com/opinion.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Legislature
Court Rules Texas School Finance Unconstitutional
Court Rules Texas School Finance Unconstitutional
Dietz says current system fails students, must be rebuilt

Richard Whittaker, Aug. 28, 2014

Dietz Stays on School Finance Suit
Dietz Stays on School Finance Suit
Hail Mary play by AG Abbott fails to force judicial recusal

Richard Whittaker, June 24, 2014

More Elections
Early Voting Locations and Voter ID Info
Early Voting Locations and Voter ID Info
Find your nearest polling location and know what to bring with you

Oct. 14, 2019

Here's What's on the Nov. 5 Ballot in Austin
Here's What's on the Nov. 5 Ballot in Austin
A quick guide to the propositions you'll be yea-ing or nay-ing

Sarah Marloff, Oct. 11, 2019

More by Richard Whittaker
Annoying adaptation of Stephen King’s novel of pyrokinetic terror

May 20, 2022

Alex Garland's mix of gender and myth is saved by its villain

May 20, 2022


Legislature, Elections, Election 2008, 2008 Primaries, Dawnna Dukes, Brian Thompson, House District 46

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle