Houston Chronicle (Houston, TX)

Houston Chronicle Clay Robison column: Craddick's challengers benefit, too.(Column)

Byline: Clay Robison

Nov. 24--AUSTIN -- Speaker Tom Craddick gained power and has held onto it (so far) with strong financial support from the business community, including Houston home builder Bob Perry. Perry alone has been a major pro-Craddick force, giving hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Republican speaker and the election campaigns of legislative candidates backing him. The home builder and his business colleagues have been rewarded with additional protections against consumer lawsuits and a less-than-onerous regulatory climate. But what happens to Perry's money if Craddick is unseated? Well -- if the poor economy doesn't dry it up -- Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Attorney General Greg Abbott, many other Republican officials and selected Democrats will continue to get bushels of it. …

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