Quotes of the Week

Shipley, Merritt, Dewhurst, McCown, Lindsay, Laney, and CarvillePolitical consultant George Shipley, remembering his time as a staffer for U.S. Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, in the Austin American-Statesman: "I was afraid of him. I used to stand up when he'd call me on the phone." Rep. Tommy Merritt, R-Longview, telling the Longview News-Journal that lawmakers didn't permanently solve school finance in the special session: "Politicians have a tendency to deal short term rather than long term." Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, telling the Houston Chronicle lawmakers have plenty of time to patch the new business tax if they need to: "If the revenues aren't there, we have the option of tightening the belt or tweaking the tax. To those who say there may be some holes, it's not operable until 2008. Give us a chance to take a good hard look at it during the 2007 (legislative) session." Former state district Judge Scott McCown, on the new school finance law in the San Antonio Express-News: "The Legislature has made a significant change. The court is going to presume that the Legislature acted constitutionally. Just like you presume someone is not guilty, you presume that the Legislature acts constitutionally." State Sen. Jon Lindsay, R-Houston, asked by the Houston Chronicle what's changed in the 30 years he's been in public office: "Well, it's become more difficult to serve as an elected official, I'll tell you that. I can't explain exactly why that is. There are just a lot of people out there that are hard to deal with." Former House Speaker Pete Laney, talking about Sen. Jeff Wentworth's proposal to let a bipartisan commission handle political redistricting in Texas: "I think the people elect their representatives to make those decisions, and can un-elect them. They can't un-elect a commission." Democratic consultant James Carville talking about the current president and his predecessor at a dinner for Dallas Democrats, reported in The Dallas Morning News: "Bush is having trouble with his generals. My man Clinton had trouble with his privates."