January 30, 2008

Art Hall and a real conflict of interest

Let me first state that despite his age and his lack of skill as a politico, I'm voting for Dale Henry for RR Commissioner. He knows the oil and gas industry from the ground up and will do an excellent job both for industry and consumers. The RR Commission regulates the oil and gas industry in Texas and we've had nothing but industry rubber stamps on it. It's time that we have someone there who'll actually do a good job for Texans and our environment.

That said, I didn't have much of problem with his opponent. Until now. Last night in Decatur, during a candidate forum, Art Hall was asked a direct question about a possible conflict of interest should he win. Specifically, he was asked if it was a conflict of interest for his wife to work for Valero Energy, one of the companies he would be regulating if elected. He stated that it wasn't and he knew it wasn't because he contacted Valero and asked them.

Wait... Art, you contacted Valero and asked them, the company you'd be regulating, if it was a conflict of interest? Hall is a bright guy so I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt and say it wasn't an issue of a lack of knowledge. So, then what was it? What is the explanation for contacting the wolf about whether or not it was OK to allow them to eat the sheep? Was it so easy to accept that her job (working on international issues for Valero) wouldn't be at risk should you vote the wrong way?

BUT, that's not all... the TTC is once again becoming a significant campaign issue and Art was asked directly about his support for tolls and the TTC. His response, to the say the least, was lacking. While the RRC won't have direct authority over privatizing our roads, it is a serious question for a candidate as it can show a willingness to privatize public assets at taxpayer expense. It's not clear where Hall stands on this and until it is, I'd feel a lot better not having him in office.

Posted by mcblogger at January 30, 2008 02:02 PM

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