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The Best and Worst Legislators 2009

Bull of the Brazos

Senator Judith Zaffirini 63, Democrat, Laredo
Two things are certain each time the Legislature convenes: She’ll accomplish miracles, and she’ll get on the last raw nerve of everyone in the Capitol. No one works harder. No one is more organized. No one is more relentless. Her list of credits this session includes provisions for prekindergarten, controls over college tuition, and assistance for universities attempting to achieve national recognition through faculty and student recruitment. Unfortunately, to achieve her goals, she conducts toxic psychological warfare on her colleagues, treats her staff like indentured servants, and resists sharing credit.

Therefore, we bestow upon her our Bull of the Brazos Award, which recognizes that the categories of Best and Worst don’t quite cover some of the outsized personalities occupying the Legislature. As we first wrote back in 1973 of the inaugural recipient, larger-than-life Bryan lawmaker Bill Moore: “Sometimes the line between a scoundrel and a statesman can be hammered too thin to recognize.”

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