It’s official. Houston Mayor Bill White, a Democrat, is running for governor. White’s announcement is being broadcast live on his campaign Web site as we speak. Meanwhile, the Texas Republican Party is already attacking White and accusing him of being “too liberal for Texas.” The online ad posted above alleges, among other things, that White supports gay marriage. After the jump, the full press release sent moments ago by White’s campaign.
For Immediate Release
Friday, Dec. 4, 2009
Bill White seeks to serve Texans as Governor
After listening to thousands across the state, Houston Mayor announces decision
HOUSTON — Today, after listening to thousands of Texans from all backgrounds, Bill White filed to run for Governor, pledging to fight for Texas’ future.
“I am proud of the people of Texas, and as Governor I will move us forward as America’s great state of opportunity,” White said. “I’ll be a Governor who challenges Texans to lead, not leave, the United States.”
White highlighted ways of creating new jobs with businesses small and large across the state. He emphasized that Texas could not be its best with skyrocketing insurance and electric rates and college tuition that increases faster than the incomes of Texans.
The son of San Antonio school teachers, White vowed to focus on improving educational achievement in K-12 grade levels, improving high school graduation rates, and reducing the costs of college.
White, a successful businessman, was first elected as Houston Mayor in 2003 and was twice re-elected with margins averaging 88%. He has been hailed as a strong leader and a problem-solver, with the Houston Chronicle noting that he has “deftly steered Houston through fiscal and tropical storms.”
During White’s administration, Houston led the nation’s cities in job growth, adding more jobs than 16 states combined. At the same time, he cut property tax rates five years in a row. After Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Ike, Bill White mobilized an effective disaster response including first responders, businesses and churches.
“I don’t have the polish of career politicians. But as a businessman and Mayor I know how to be accountable for results, not just rhetoric. I have a track record of bringing people together to get things done,” White said. “That’s what Texas needs now.”
Last December, White launched a U.S. Senate campaign that in 11 months attracted more than 1500 volunteers, more than 5500 contributors, and more than $6.5 million. He has visited 70 Texas counties to date.