If you thought Gov. Rick Perry was amping up the crazy to lock in wingnut support before, expect him to REALLY go nuts now that she has sent this email out to supporters:
Our campaign is off to a great start! I am overwhelmed by the enthusiastic support from all across the state and we are excited for the next phase of the campaign to begin.
I'm writing to you today to ask for your help because I believe we can do better, and I want you to be a partner in our campaign.
I am running for Governor because Texas must prepare for the future. I am running because I believe it is conservative to demand results and hold government accountable - with integrity and responsibility.
As I travel the state, people have expressed frustration with the current leadership in Austin. They tell me the Governor is putting his personal political agenda in front of the agenda that will move the state forward. And you know what, I agree with them.
We find ourselves at a crossroads. People from all parts of Texas feel it is time for a change in Austin.
While Hutchison remains Texas' most popular politician, she first has to survive her intra-party contest, and Perry is locking up the crazy secessionist vote (48% of Texas Republicans) with his own talk of secession. A Ras poll a month ago had Perry beating Hutchison 42-38, showing that statewide popularity only goes so far in the Republican primary.
The big drama, however, isn't whether Hutchison was going to run. Everyone assumed she did. But whether she'll quit her Texas Senate seat early to head home and campaign. It's clear that she can't afford to stick around in DC twiddling her thumb and voting "no" on everything while Perry systematically locks of up key electoral constituencies. If she's going to take her gubernatorial run seriously, she has to head home ASAP. So leave now, and force Republicans to defend a tough special election seat this year, or keep her Senate
Houston Mayor Bill White, who aspires for that Senate seat, claims Hutchison told him that she'd resign in a way that would force a May 2010 special election for the seat. That means she'd resign in October of thereafter. But can she wait even that long? Perry is heading up in the polls, and every day she spends in DC is one more day he consolidates support and paints her as an out-of-touch creature of the Beltway. It'd be best for her to quit sooner, come home, and campaign. And sure, while that would set up a special election this year, that's not Hutchison's problem. Her party has screwed things up so disastrously nationally, that she's better off focusing on a state in which the GOP is still relevant.