Seriously, Texas: Buc-ee's Is Not a Legitimate Campaign Issue

Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

In case you haven't been following one of the stupider developments of the primary election cycle -- and there have been plenty to choose from -- Buc-ee's is officially an issue in the race to become Texas' next lieutenant governor.

To recap: Buc-ee's is a chain of enormous roadside convenience supercenters, most famous for its absurdist billboards, extravagant whiz palaces and Beaver Nuggets. (These, for the record, contain negligible amounts of beaver but lots and lots of corn derivatives -- think Corn Pops, only puffier.) Over the weekend, Dan Patrick announced the endorsement of the chain's co-founders Arch "Beaver" Aplin and Don Wasek, and its eponymous beaver mascot, Buc-ee.

Wait -- it gets dumber. In a tweet that appears to have since been deleted, U.S. Congressman/rising Democratic star Joaquin Castro pledged an informal boycott of Buc-ee's:

See also:Terrell Is Taking Its New Buc-ee's Way Too Seriously

Buc-ee's the company quickly distanced itself from the Patrick endorsement, telling the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's Bud Kennedy that the founders were expressing their personal political views, not those of the company.

"We believe Beaver Nuggets and beef jerky taste good regardless of political affiliation," their attorney said, apparently with a straight face.

Now, just to bring the stupidity full circle, Patrick has turned the imbroglio into a campaign ad accusing the Castro brothers of "liberal bullying" and "attacking Texas businesses to further their hatred of all things conservative":

Last night, Patrick declared a "victory for small businesses in Texas" after the Castro brothers "cancelled their Buc-ee's boycott," which was never a boycott so much as a handful of tweets, and which wasn't so much "called off" as subtly backed away from on the grounds that Patrick made it sound like he had the endorsement of the convenience-store chain itself.

It doesn't have to be this way, Texas. Sure, there's probably something of a partisan divide on Buc-ee's, at least among those who fuel themselves with divisiveness, with lefties more inclined to dismiss it as the most decadent possible expression of America's soul-destroying car culture, and right-wingers extolling it as a roadside shrine to free enterprise.

But this really isn't something that has to divide us. Hipsters and rednecks alike can appreciate a giant novelty beaver.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.