Former Texas Workforce Commissioner and Dallas resident Tom Pauken will run for governor in 2014, entering a possibly cluttered Republican field.
“I like Rick Perry. I like Greg Abbott,” said Pauken, a former chairman of the Texas Republican Party who also worked in the Reagan administration, told the Texas Tribune. “I don’t know what they’re going to do. One or both may run. I’m going to run on issues.”
According to the Morning News, which broke the story:
The Dallas lawyer and long-time Republican stalwart says state government has for too long neglected transportation needs, boosted bonded indebtedness, failed public education and dispensed taxpayer money in questionable ways, sometimes to politically well-connected interests. He particularly singled out the cancer-research agency currently embroiled in controversy over giving millions of dollars without required scientific vetting. He says he’s against crony-capitalism whether in the Obama adminsitration in Washington or in Austin. He wants to end the Robin Hood transfer of money from property-rich school districts to property-poor districts. He says the state can make up the difference in a “revenue neutral” way by replacing that portion of property taxes with consumption taxes or expanding the sales tax. As Workforce Commissioner, Pauken championed giving high school students different paths to graduate, including more emphasis on vocational education for students who aren’t going to college.
Abbott “remains focused on the legislative session and serving the people of Texas…He believes any political considerations for 2014 can and should wait until after the legislative session has concluded,” a spokesman told the Tribune. Perry’s office did not immediately reply to a request for comment.