In light of Tom Craddick’s assertion over the last couple of days that he is a statewide officeholder and should be treated as such when members seek to defrock him, a commenter mentions an interview the Speaker did with our editor, Evan Smith, on the public television show TEXAS MONTHLY TALKS back in February.
A partial transcript follows:
CRADDICK: The Speakership is different than the Lieutenant Governor or the Governor. They are statewide elected officials, even though many of the media paint the Speaker as a statewide office.
CRADDICK: It’s not. You know, I have to get elected in my individual district just like everybody else out there–the other 149 members.
CRADDICK: We do that, and then you come down and have another election in which you have to be elected by your peers. And so even though there’s focus in the media that I’m a statewide candidate, I’m not. But I try to do what I think will help the members of the House.
SMITH: But surely, Mr. Speaker, you acknowledge that you are not only as powerful as every other member of the house. You do occupy a pretty significant position.
CRADDICK: Well, I agree with that. I think the Speaker obviously is in a unique position in state government, that [he or she is] one of the three legs of a stool. But he or she doesn’t have to run for a statewide office.