Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Ann Richards, Grand Texas Dame, Dies

Ann Richards
Originally uploaded by wonderbread74.
Former Texas Governor Ann Richards died tonight. One must wonder how our nation would look today if she just had beat the younger Bush in the 1994 Texas Gubernatorial race.

The wily, silver-haired Democrat had a sharp wit and rarely in the last two decades has an American politician dead-panned so concisely a comment than Richards did back in 1988 when she skewered then VP George H.W. Bush.
"Poor George, he can't help it. He was born with a silver foot in his mouth."
To be more precise in conveying the meaning it works better if you replace the "help" with hep as she did at the 1988 Democratic Convention.

She wasn't just a one-shot quipmeister, either. She highlighted the equality of men and women by saying, "Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backwards and in high heels."

She also made fun of the former president's lack of an Texan drawl when she noted, "I am delighted to be here with you this evening because after listening to George Bush all these years, I figured you needed to know what a real Texas accent sounds like."

It's odd why Democrats today fail to attack W's faux country boy persona when he's actually a product of the snobby Northeastern establishment that he claims to be against.

Who knows what would have happened if Richards would have beaten W. back in 1994. She was, after all, the first of his father's detractors to famously fall at the son's hands. The second could possibly be Al Gore, the VP of the man who beat his father in 1992 and to be followed by, of course, Saddam Hussein and finally democracy.

Ann Richards death, today, marks just another end to a Democratic Party too afraid to attack either harshly or through hilarious commentary. We don't have many politicians like Ann Richards anymore and until we do the very things she championed, minority and gender equality and programs for the poor, will continue to dwindle into oblivion.

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