The ACRE message about the quote from House Speaker Craddick that the Trans-Texas Corridor was “dead” has prompted interesting comments. Some commenters were concerned that people would think because Craddick said the Corridor was “dead” we didn’t have to struggle against it anymore. This is not the case; we do need to continue our efforts.
The quote is significant because Craddick had never said anything like this about the Corridor before. It is significant that so many politicians, including Craddick, in this campaign season think it is necessary for them to oppose the Corridor in order to get elected. This is a big change. When we started fighting against the Corridor, politicians weren’t saying this. This means that we are making progress.
We can’t say that the Corridor is dead until it is officially killed legislatively. So we all need to continue working toward this end, but I think it is encouraging that more and more politicians are coming out against it in their campaigns.
Here are comments from representatives of some of the organizations that have been in the forefront of the fight against the Corridor.
DAN BYFIELD, American Land Foundation
“Don't believe that the TTC is dead. Politicians will say anything to get re-elected. Mr. Craddick had the opportunity the past two sessions to kill this, but why would he now reveal that it's dead? The Legislature is the only body capable of ‘killing’ the TTC, but they're not in session. What is very revealing about this statement is his need, like so many other politicians running for office, to say anything about the Trans-Texas Corridor - especially something this negative. He realizes it is a hot button issue with his constituents and fellow House members (who will be voting for him for Speaker), otherwise he would never have mentioned it on the campaign stump. We are making a difference, but if Mr. Craddick and others who voted for the TTC get back into office, nothing will change and the TTC will live on.”
AGNES VOGES, Blackland Coalition
“I doubt seriously that Craddick has the truth in this matter. Granted, TTC may have hit a snag or two, but one way or the other, it is still happening. Again, the LAW has to be changed before this thing is dead. If not, then there is nothing that will keep it from being resuscitated at any time they can get their fingers on some money.”
LINDA STALL, Corridor Watch
“The law creating TTC remains and it should be changed . . . and some oversight legislation for PPPs put in place. We are hearing from a few people around the state that their Counties are getting into strangely oversized road projects, and we are concerned that the push will shift to developing ‘County projects’ that then are shifted to TxDOT and linked together . . . TTC under the radar.
“It is nice to hear that Craddick realizes it’s in his interest to say the Corridor is dead. I am always leery when a leadership official says something like that, just in case he's trying to get people to stop speaking out . . . and to undermine his opposition candidate's ability to make political mileage out of the Corridor as an issue.”
TERRI HALL, San Antonio Toll Party and TURF
“Craddick's comments are no more true than saying the sun won't rise tomorrow. This is an election year, period. NO law has been changed or policies reversed to prove this statement correct. In fact, they've gone underground and are cheating in how they're supplementing the environmental record to make it appear they'll use existing right of way for TTC-69 using clever language rife with get of jail free cards. Also, TTC-35 is barreling forward unabated.
“It's huge he [Craddick] even feels the need to say it to get re-elected!”