Since Tom Leppert’s Facebook and Twitter accounts have been basically dormant since he finished a distant third in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate, we’ve had to fill in a few blanks. Here, then, is a snippet of Leppert watching Ted Cruz debate Paul Sadler.
An advance copy of a new book about the failure of Washington Mutual says the giant S&L sought to off-load subprime and other risky loans as the housing market was unraveling and later suffered a crippling bank run, quietly losing nearly $17 billion in deposits en route to becoming the biggest bank failure in American history.
The account is timely and instructive because Tom Leppert, who’s running for the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate in Texas, served as a WaMu director and has touted his acumen as a businessman in the race. When we asked to interview the former Dallas mayor about the book and about his role at WaMu, spokesman Daniel Keylin said, “Tom would be more than happy to talk to you, but he’d obviously like to read the book first, which I understand hasn’t been released yet. Tough to talk about the contents of the book unless you’ve read it.”
Leppert joined the Washington Mutual board in 2005, before becoming mayor, and left it in 2009. He was a member of the company’s audit and corporate relations committees and also chaired the board’s governance committee. In debates and elsewhere Leppert has deflected blame for WaMu’s failure, pinning it mainly on a sharp, unexpected drop in housing prices and on federal regulators taking over the bank even though it was still solvent. Those regulators seized WaMu in 2008 and promptly sold its assets to JPMorgan Chase. Meantime, investors in the bank lost at least $30 billion.
Michael J. Mooney flew to New York City this morning — but he almost didn’t make it. Charging to security, he was approaching the 30-minute deadline past which they will not allow you to board. And who should be at the head of the security line but Tom Leppert, ole Mr. Hands Himself. Seeing Mike’s distress, Leppert let him (and another guy) go through security first. Mike says he made it to the gate exactly 30 minutes before the scheduled departure, meaning that if Leppert hadn’t helped him out, Mike would have missed his flight.
That, friends, is the sort of compassionate conservatism that will make the country great once again. Mark your ballots accordingly.
This news came down late Friday afternoon, but I’m just now seeing it on the Texas Tribune. Dave Carney is a political adviser to David Dewhurst. In an internal memo memo obtained by Politico, Carney said that Tom Leppert — and not Ted Cruz — is running in the No. 2 spot. As in:
“I assume by today Leppert has close the margin and is now ahead of Ted. Leppert’s TV ads and debate performances are clearly helping him. Expect the mayor to define and engage Cruz outside of dallas so he can bury Cruz and finish second. … With Cruz flat-lined and the Mayor growing, (pollster Mike) Baselice tells me he is confident Leppert could thread the needle and pass Cruz as Staffer and his allies attack only us.”
All of which tells me that Zac is probably hard at work on another Leppert spoof. Least I hope so.
The DMN‘s Robert T. Garrett is wrong about Tom Leppert’s new Senate-primary ad, where the former Dallas mayor dismisses his opponents as “empty suits.” Garrett says the spot is weak. But it’s actually the best one Leppert’s done yet, perfect for the TV-commercial genre, where a punchy, superficial, easily grasped message is prized above all. (Since Leppert’s talking about suits, though, shouldn’t he really have been wearing his trademark gangster one?)
Conservative Tom Leppert released another conservative campaign ad for his conservative run for the U.S. Senate as a conservative. And with it, he’s debuted a new package of hand gestures. We’ve had our team in the lab all morning breaking down game tape. Here are their findings.
Tom Leppert, who’s running for the U.S. Senate, really needs to think about getting a new producer for his TV spots. Leppert’s first commercial had him talking in what looked like a jail cell. Now, in this new one, which touts his skill as a dynamic job creator, he’s seen strolling down a seedy industrial street where you half-expect to see homeless people huddled around sidewalk bonfires (h/t Texas Tribune). Whatever the intent, it just makes the former Dallas mayor look, well, really forlorn.
Last night’s World Affairs Council-Dallas/Fort Worth dinner at the Hyatt Regency DFW was like a CEOs’ homecoming fete, with everyone from Rex Tillerson (Exxon Mobil) and mega-Realtor Ebby Halliday to Comerica’s Ralph Babb showing up to see AT&T’s Randall Stephenson accept the WAC’s 28th H. Neil Mallon Award. Former CEO-turned-Senate-candidate Tom Leppert also turned up and drew a shout-out from Stephenson, whose company relocated to Dallas from San Antonio in 2008: “Tom was the first guy who started recruiting me. He came to see me even before I was CEO. … I said, ‘Tom, can we just wait!?’ ”
And, also, the first eight results when doing the Â Google image search “Tom Leppert for Senate.” The tweets are from the last 24 hours.
I follow Tom Leppert on Twitter. He’s running for Senate, in case you hadn’t heard. Maybe you don’t follow him. Maybe you don’t even have a Twitter account. I can help. Here are his last seven tweets:
UPDATE (8/17/11): Leppert’s campaign office called to say that they were worried that people might think these were really Leppert’s tweets. They asked for a disclaimer saying that these really are made-up tweets. So to be clear: I made these up.
If you have fewer followers on Twitter than, say, Tim Rogers, who only ever tweets about Cane Rosso pizza and his reaction to week-oldÂ New York Times stories, you’re probably not exactly getting your message out. So, even though he’ll probably let this thing play out, it’s best to come up with some jobs he can do when it all falls apart.
Even before he announced he would get into the race, Tom Leppert was advised here to save his money rather than run for Kay Bailey Hutchison’s U.S. Senate seat. The former Dallas mayor didn’t much like the suggestion, insisting that he is an “analytical” type who sees a “clear path to victory.” More recently his allies have floated the idea that Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, the big dog in any potential Senate scrap, may have decided not to run for the GOP nomination. If that were true it would give Leppert a better shot at the nod but hardly a clear path, as Ted Cruz has been generating much more positive buzz recently as the Tea Party fave.
However, any slim hope by Dewhurst’s rivals that the lite guv would not run for Hutchison’s seat will be dashed later this month, according to the Politico web site via the DMN. Politico says Dewhurst has selected a campaign manager and is very likely to toss his hat into the ring. (Which, in retrospect, may be why the Williams twins–Roger and Michael–recently fled the Senate race to enter the House race in Parker, Tarrant and Wise counties instead.) We got the idea that Dewhurst would leap into the Senate fray when he spoke at D last month and now, if Politico is to be believed, it seems all but certain. Sorry, Mr. Mayor, but we did try to warn you.