Thanks to Martha Estes for alerting us to the Trans-Texas Corridor popping up in the Perry-Hutchison race. As explained in the Dallas Morning News transportation blog
KBH has started a Corridor clock running on one of her websites.
"Hutchison's campaign team is betting that it [the TTC] will be an issue. They've been sending out messages in the past couple days highlighting what they say is Perry's stubborn support for his Trans Texas Corridor idea.
"Apparently, the Governor hasn't sufficiently disavowed the program. . . .
Still, the Legislature left town this year without extending the state's authority to make private contracts for toll roads. Without the ability to partner with private companies to build and operate toll roads, the TTC -- whatever it is called -- is as worthless as last year's bets on the Derby. Right?
"Where Hutchison's team is on firmer footing is in questioning whether Perry has ever truly disavowed the TTC. He never has. He bowed to the political reality that it wouldn't fly, but he has never apologized or retreated from his position that it was a good idea.
"What he has done . . . is say that he and TxDOT made mistakes in the way they presented the idea, essentially scaring the holy business out of farmers and ranchers who saw on the early corridor maps huge expanses of lands subject to eminent domain.
"[I]t is exactly those folks -- the landowners, and not so much the toll road opponents -- that team Hutchison is attempting to reach with its latest barrage of thrusts at Perry and the Trans Texas Corridor.
"Will transportation play a big role in your vote for governor next year? If so, are you sufficiently mad about tolls to hold Perry accountable?
"[H]ere is the gist of the Hutchison attack on Perry, from campaign spokesman Jeff Sadosky:
'Texans deserve a straight yes or no from Rick Perry on whether he still supports his controversial Trans-Texas Corridor plan to confiscate nearly 600,000 acres of land. His refusal to say is just another attempt by Rick Perry to cover-up his record of doing what's right for himself but wrong for Texas.'"