Farrar, a Craddick opponent, said members and members-elect, whom she refused to name, also are being threatened if they don't vote for Craddick. She said she has voice mail and e-mail messages to support her allegations, but would not allow a Houston Chronicle reporter to view or hear them.
Farrar, who voted against Craddick in 2005, said she has not personally received the calls but has heard from several members who have. She declined to identify them or the lobbyists who have made the contact.
"My purpose is not to expose any (House) members or members of the lobby. I want the practice to stop," she said.
Farrar is asking the Texas Ethics Commission to issue an advisory opinion on whether the conduct would constitute "legislative bribery" and if she has a duty to report the activity to Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle. She said the calls are coming from the speaker's office, former legislators and registered lobbyists.
Chris Cutrone, a spokesman for Craddick, said he doesn't know what lobbyists are doing but that it's "completely false that anybody in the speaker's office is making threatening phone calls." He said Craddick is looking forward to the Ethics Commission's ruling.
The Ethics Commission's legal staff plans to draft an advisory opinion in time for the commission's Nov. 27 meeting, said Natalia Luna Ashley, commission general counsel.
There's another aspect to the story, as we know:
Rep. Kevin Bailey, D-Houston and a member of Craddick's leadership team, said he's been threatened by fellow Democrats.
"I'm not too pleased with their tactics right now," said Bailey, chairman of the House General Investigating and Ethics Committee. "(Farrar) told a friend of mine that I better be a loyal Democrat or they'll run someone against me."
During a Wednesday meeting of Harris County Tejano Democrats, Bailey's name did come up because it appears on the pledge list for Craddick, Farrar said.
She denied telling anyone the Democrats will run a candidate against Bailey in the next primary election, she said.