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Burka: Mayor Tom Leppert Had a Sitdown with GOP Media Strategists About Senate Seat

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Tuesday morning, Texas Monthly's Paul Burka took note of Schutze's column from July, in which Jim got a no-nuthin' from the mayor and his peoples concerning his interest in running for Kay Bailey Hutchison's could-come-open Senate seat. Wrote Burka, he's never taken the idea seriously, as big-city mayors haven't done well in statewide races (s'up, Ron Kirk!), but, "still, it is not too far-fetched to envision a runoff between Leppert and [Houston's] Bill White, the mayors of the two largest cities in the state." A few hours later, Burka followed up with this:

A colleague in Dallas reports that Leppert had a daylong meeting with the Scott Howell firm, and fundraiser Carol Reed was present as well. This sounds serious. Suggestion: Figure out a response for the certain-to-be-asked question: Why did you change your mind when you said that mayor of Dallas was the only office you were interested in?

So, this morning we called the local office of Scott Howell & Company and were told we'd need to speak with Malorie Miller, the firm's new media director and a former worker on the campaigns of President George W. Bush and brother Jeb. Alas, she's in Austin at the moment and unavailable for comment; she's got our call-back info, so we'll see. Howell, for those who've forgotten, is the former Karl Rove acolyte responsible for the ads attacking Tennessee Senate candidate Rep. Harold Ford Jr. and then-Sen. Max Cleland.

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