June 2, 2009
By WAYNE SLATER and CHRISTY HOPPE
The Dallas Morning News
AUSTIN – The biggest beneficiary of the legislative session just might have been the one who wasn't there.
Kay Bailey Hutchison steered clear of Austin, but the fractious 140-day session that ended Monday without tackling some high-profile problems gives her plenty with which to target Gov. Rick Perry in the coming Republican primary.
"The summary judgment in regard to this session is lack of leadership," said Southern Methodist University political scientist Cal Jillson. "That's her theme."
Among big items left unaddressed: property taxes, the highest homeowner insurance rates in the country, and more children without health insurance than in any other state. The last-minute meltdown Monday night over transportation funding, which may require a special session to fix, could be another point in the argument about failed leadership.
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