It’s not a surprise that former Mayor Park Cities, in his lust for higher office, says he won’t support federal earmarks to pay for the Trinity River toll road. The surprise is that everyone is so surprised.
Leppert’s announcement that he won’t vote for an earmark — a provision for a local, often pet, project attached to a larger federal spending bill — for the Trinity made headlines last week. Reported Channel 8: “Asked if he would not support any earmarks [if elected to the U.S. Senate] for the Army Corps of Engineers budget to fund Dallas’ Trinity River project and Fort Worth’s Trinity Vision plan, Leppert said, ‘I would not.’ ”
This is the same Leppert, of course, who raced after federal earmark money for the Trinity when he was mayor with so much enthusiasm that it was kind of embarrassing. This is the same Leppert who accused the Corps and the federal government of not being good partners in the Trinity process. But that approach doesn’t fit his new persona as hard-hitting, tax-cutting, right-wing hero, so Leppert has disowned the project and left us to clean up his mess. Which, of course, we can’t afford to do. Which is also his fault, thanks to the way he spent our tax money as mayor.
But I’m not surprised. Leppert has been two-faced in his pronouncements since he was elected. He actively courted the gay community, even marching in the local gay pride parade. But as soon as Leppert didn’t need their votes, and the gay community’s support was crucial in winning the Trinity and convention center hotel votes, he dumped them. Support for gay rights doesn’t play well with the GOP voters who will pick their party’s Senate candidate.
I could list more Leppert about-faces (with the city’s minority community, with the neighborhoods), but it’s too depressing. My only hope? That he spends his millions of dollars in the GOP Senate race, gets his four percent of the vote, and has to start looking for a job, just like the rest of us.