Would you believe the falling out between Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn and Governor Rick Perry all started over funding for community colleges?
[Strayhorn's] claim: Perry torpedoed funding for her TexasNextStep proposal last year, even though he had earlier voiced support for it.
His response: Untrue. He did not try to sabotage TexasNextStep. Quite the contrary.
"Your word is your contract. I take people at their word," Strayhorn told The Associated Press. "Yes, I believed in my gut that I had a commitment for TexasNextStep right up from the governor and from the governor's office. And that was the very place where it was done under."
But Perry's aides say the governor's office actually tried to help pass a version of Strayhorn's proposal during the 2003 regular legislative session.
"The comptroller does a disservice to Texans with her revisionist history when the fact is Gov. Perry worked to pass her bill and to ask (legislative) members to support it," said Perry spokeswoman Kathy Walt.
Strayhorn said that's untrue. A community college program the governor's aides were considering didn't even resemble her proposal, she said.
"This governor and this governor's administration killed TexasNextStep," she said. "They killed it behind closed doors."
Strayhorn declined to characterize her dispute with Perry as the sole reason for their public fallout, but it clearly angered her.
"I don't point to any point as rifts or not rifts. You know, I like Rick Perry; I like everybody," she said. But she added, "I guess this was the first time we'd worked that closely together on something that really, really was important — and is important."