Friday, December 04, 2009

Gilbert will run for Agriculture Commissioner, endorses Shami

In our conference call (just completed) Hank Gilbert stated that he would switch from the gubernatorial contest to a re-challenge of Todd Staples for commissioner of agriculture, and endorsed Farouk Shami in the Democratic primary.

My best to Hank, his family, and the campaign's staff.

Update: From the link above ...

“In August when I made the decision to enter the race for Governor, it was to provide the leadership and bold ideas this state needs. At the time, I believed I was the only candidate who could win and carry a tide of Democratic victories from the state House to the courthouse,” Gilbert said.

“With recent entries into the race, it’s become clear that there are now two people seeking the support of Democrats who can continue this fight to victory and allow me to return to the race for Agriculture Commissioner,” Gilbert continued.

“One of them I’m proud to support as a friend and fellow Texan, a man who will serve the citizens of this amazing state faithfully and provide them with the leadership to overcome any challenge. It’s my honor and privilege to endorse Farouk Shami for Governor of Texas ..."

“Farouk will force the transformation of Texas into a global leader in education, renewable energy, civil rights, and transportation,” Gilbert said.

Update II: Other reactions ...

Ross Ramsey at the TexTrib:

He said he endorsed Shami over Houston Mayor Bill White on the basis of trust. "I was raised to be a man of principle. I was taught that a man's word is his bond... On two separate occasions throughout this campaign, he gave me his word that he was going to stay in the Senate race," Gilbert said. "I never would have got into this race had I thought that he or John Sharp was going to get out of the Senate race and into this race.

"To me, it's a trust issue... I told him, 'Bill, you violated my trust.'"

Karl-Thomas Musselman at Burnt Orange Report:

I feel that endorsement serves as a distraction from what I view as encouraging and exciting news that Gilbert will remain a strong candidate for an office in which he will excel in running. It remains to be seen if it will have much impact on the race ...

Charles Kuffner of Off the Kuff:

... Hank Gilbert announced that he was dropping out of the Governor’s race, and will run instead for Ag Commish, which is where he started out. He also endorsed Farouk Shami for Governor. Whatever – next summer at the convention, when White is the nominee, no one will remember that.

Wayne Slater at the DMN's Trail Blazers:

... Gilbert says he's convinced that (Shami has) the state's interests at heart and "can make the difference for people of this state, to pull the wagon out of the ditch." While he clearly has differences with White at the moment, Gilbert is considered an unalloyed Democrat by party loyalists.

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