Among Dan Patrick’s less desirable qualities is his monumental ego. A case in point. Patrick wrote a letter to President Obama in an attempt to get the federal government to agree to certain things Patrick wanted them to do for Texas. What’s wrong with that? Well, the person who is authorized to communicate with the federal government is not the Lieutenant Governor, it’s the governor. If anyone were going to write the feds seeking concessions, it should have been Greg Abbott, whom, you may have heard, is the actual governor of Texas.
Not Patrick. He reminds me of Tom Craddick during the terrible years of his speakership. His view of the how government worked harkened back to Louis XIV of France and the ancien regime: “L’etat, c’est moi.” “Pay no attention to that Abbott fellow. I, Dan Patrick, speak for the state.” The rebellion of Craddick’s committee chairs still stands out in my memory as the best moment of incredible political theatre I observed in my career, and I was standing right there at the back of the House chamber, watching his former allies put the knife in. Will Patrick learn from those mistakes? He would be wise to heed the lessons of the past.