September 10, 2008
All John Sharp, all the time

Behold the news machine that is John Sharp.

Sometimes, the political itch just won't go away. Friends of former Comptroller John Sharp, who has lost two races for lieutenant governor and has long eyed the governor's office, say he now is focusing on a U.S. Senate seat.

That would be the seat that U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison is expected to leave sometime next year to prepare for a race for governor in 2010.


Sharp, a Democrat, has been mostly overlooked in the speculation, and he is shy about talking to reporters about his plans. But friends say he has been making the rounds, shoring up potential political and financial support, etc.

Some fellow Democrats believe Sharp's chance to win another statewide office has come and gone. And they believe he may have hurt himself within his party by helping Perry win passage of a new business tax two years ago, when the Legislature was facing a Texas Supreme Court deadline to make school finance changes.

Sharp gets "mostly overlooked in the speculation"? Since when?

Greg has a good take on this. I'll just add that either the Democrats' bench increases sufficiently so that Sharp-dropping won't be de rigeur any more, or he does something to forever quiet the mumblings, either by running and winning or announcing his official retirement. I think the former is more likely than the latter, but it's no sure thing.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on September 10, 2008 to Election 2010

One politician whose name is floated for almost every statewide office is former Comptroller John Sharp, who lost runs for lieutenant governor in 1998 and 2002. Former Party chairs Bob Slagle and Molly Beth Malcolm said Sharp is an unlikely path for the Democrats' future.

"I doubt that he can raise the money for a major statewide race. You lose too many times and it makes it hard to raise statewide money," Slagle said.

"John Sharp had his time," said Malcolm, 53. "It's time for new blood. That's not to say you won't see people my age running, but this is really a generational change."

Posted by: R.G. Ratcliffe on September 10, 2008 1:31 PM
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