Naked City

CD 10: bankers, lawyers, God

By decree of Bug Man Tom DeLay, the District 25 race pitting Lloyd Doggett against Leticia Hinojosa will be the only congressional race in which Austin voters are likely to have much effect on the outcome. District 21, held by 16-year incumbent Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, was pretty much left alone by the GOP. That leaves the new District 10, stretching from West Austin all the way to Katy, as an open seat drawn to elect a new Republican member, most likely from the heavily Anglo, high-turnout GOP precincts in the western suburbs of Houston.

Recently, Austin mayor-emeritus Gus Garcia, who lives in the slice of Northeast Austin gerrymandered into District 10, said he is considering entering the race, if only to avoid "abandoning it to the Republicans." The cold demographics suggest Garcia could do little more than run a symbolic campaign, but the race gained some additional local interest Monday when Teresa Doggett Taylor filed for the race. Taylor, a mortgage banker and onetime Austinite -- and ex-wife of former local radio host John Doggett, a minor player in the Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill saga -- was "the conservative Doggett" in a 1996 congressional race against the unrelated Lloyd, and the 1994 GOP challenger to state comptroller John Sharp. She said she would "fight for greater education accountability, more support for the commander in chief and our troops -- past and present -- and more focus placed on love for family, community, and our country."

In that exemplary vein, sanctimony, militarism, and schmaltz look to be the campaign watchwords. Taylor's GOP opponents include former Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael McCaul, who was "chief of terrorism and national security" in the criminal division; former Harris Co. District Judge John Devine, semifamous for defiantly featuring a painting of the Ten Commandments in his courtroom; former Houston City Council Member John Kelley, now a sports consultant promoting a Houston Olympics; Jackson Walker attorney Dave Phillips, an East Texas cattle rancher, Navy vet, and former cop; and another mortgage banker, Ben Streusand, CEO of Home Loan Corp., chairman of the Texas Mortgage Bankers Association, and Gov. Perry's appointee to the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission. Except for Taylor, all are Anglo and male. Austinites, choose your representative.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Election 2004, Gus Garcia, Teresa Doggett Taylor, Michael McCaul, John Devine, John Kelley, Dave Phillips, Ben Streusand

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