The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 96, July 1992 - April, 1993 Page: 546
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Simpson questions my motives by suggesting that I did this to obtain
publicity for a future race for governor. At the time, I was in my first
term as attorney general. Five years later, I did make an unsuccessful
race for governor. But a public official is constantly under attack from
the press. His shortcomings are apt to be fully publicized, and should
be. If he does not get favorable publicity for his accomplishments, he
has small chance of surviving. His alternative is to buy advertising during
a campaign. At that time, Texas had about ten million people, which
makes an advertising campaign very expensive. I make no apology for
the favorable publicity I received from these gambling raids; such pub-
licity is a natural product of journalism. But publicity was not my main
motivation. Neither was I primarily concerned with questions of morali-
ty. My main concern was for the dignity of the law, and the bad effect il-
legal gambling had on the community, its quality of life, and the
integrity of its police. The flagrant and open gambling in Galveston had
long been a cancer on law enforcement in Texas. I had come back from
the war in the South Pacific determined upon a career in law enforce-
ment as a means of making government by law work better. I thought at
the time, and still think, that closing the Free State of Galveston was the
patriotic thing to do.
I paid the price for our success, however. In my campaign for the
Supreme Court and in my first attorney general's race, I had carried
Galveston County. After the raids, I failed to carry Galveston County in
four statewide races. Since then, a majority of the people of Galveston
have several times voted against public gambling, but not for me.
Many years later I was in a boat on Lake Austin, looking at real estate.
When the motor stalled, we were pulled in about six miles by another
boat. When we got to the wharf, we introduced ourselves to the driver of
the other boat, who asked, "Are you the man who used to be attorney
general?" I told him that I was. He said, laughing, "Well, I'm from Galve-
ston. If I'd known who you were, I would have left you out there on the
lake." I do not think he meant it, but I do not think he would ever vote
for me, either.
On another matter: Cartwright states that I used my knowledge of for-
mer client Frank Sharp's office to pull down a whole generation of De-
mocratic Party leadership. I was not in Texas when Frank Sharp made
his arrangements with Governor Preston Smith, and I had no knowledge
of them. I recused myself in the Justice Department from this whole af-
fair and took no part in any of it.
Despite these inaccuracies, I recommend this book as required read-
ing for Texas history buffs.
And I am not mad at Jim Simpson.
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 96, July 1992 - April, 1993, periodical, 1993; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101215/m1/616/: accessed January 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.