Tom Leppert for Senate. Let's Talk About That.

Dear Opposition Researchers working for U.S. Senate campaigns other than that of former-after-midnight Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert:

Please contact me about the following things Leppert is going to say about himself in a campaign. First, he is going to say he led two successful referendum campaigns, one for the Trinity River toll road and the other for a downtown convention hotel.

On the toll road: That's not what he was fighting for. There never was a referendum to kill the toll road. The referendum was about building it between the levees, where it floods. He was on the side that wanted to build it in the flood zone. He won. I can tell you a lot about what that did to Dallas.

He won the hotel thing too -- to use public funding to create a hotel that belongs to the city council and competes with private enterprise. He'll be running as a conservative. I think you see the opportunities there.

He will say he brought down crime rates in Dallas. He actually brought down crime rate statistics. Lots to talk about.

He is going to say he opposed a tax increase. Yes. He was opposed to a tax increase after he was in favor of a tax increase. I know you know what to do with that.

Mainly he's going to say he left Dallas in better shape than he found it. Please plan to spend some time with me on that one. I want you to remember two names on this score, and I will explain later.

Arthur. And Archie.


Let me see if I'm forgetting anything. Oh, yeah, the head of his campaign finance committee was about to be indicted for fraud when she died in a so-called murder-suicide. We need to chat about that.

But the big one is this. When Tom Leppert took over as mayor, the city of Dallas had a levee system that was rated to protect it from an 800-year flood. That's like a Noah flood. He leaves the city with a levee system that is rated not to protect the city from anything. Squat. No good. At all.

What else? Oh, the honesty thing. How could I forget?

He promised Dallas voters during the 2007 Trinity River referendum that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had "signed off" on all safety issues involving the levees. A fibski. They had not. And that little issue remains unresolved.

And he promised voters that the North Texas Tollway Authority had full funding all arranged to build the road. Also a fibski. Three years later, the money is nowhere in sight.

Folks, you know where to find me. Don't be strangers.

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Jim Schutze has been the city columnist for the Dallas Observer since 1998. He has been a recipient of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies’ national award for best commentary and Lincoln University’s national Unity Award for writing on civil rights and racial issues. In 2011 he was admitted to the Texas Institute of Letters.
Contact: Jim Schutze