John Carona, Miles Away from Ordinary

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Must be love this morning, as two Friends of Unfair Park who more often than not vote "D" sent along this link to the new issue of The Texas Observer (unrelated), in which the staff ranks "The People's Friends and Foes" coming out of the 81st Legislature. And topping the list of Friends is a Dallas Republican, state Sen. John Carona, and not solely because he fought the G.O.P.'s attempts to rewrite the rules to push through the voter I.D. legislation:

Carona championed legislation that would have allowed communities to raise money through taxes for transportation projects, including ­mass-transit projects like commuter rail in Dallas-Fort Worth. That bold proposal provoked howls of ­indignation from anti-tax zealots. Carona pushed back, criticizing the naysayers, including Gov. Rick Perry, for being blinded by ideology. He even threatened to filibuster when the local-option tax was struck from the bill late in the session, ­quoting an old Italian saying: "I can protect myself from my enemies; may God protect me from my friends!"

For those needing a second opinion, Carona tops Texas Monthly's latest list of "The Best and Worst Legislators 2009." And, lest we forget, Carona spoke out against the governor's choice for the state Board of Pardons and Paroles, the vibrator hater.

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