San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas


DRIPPING SPRINGS — Donna Campbell, the fast-talking emergency room doctor turned politician, was uncharacteristically at a loss for words when asked about Texas’ mounting water and electricity crises at a candidate forum Sunday evening.

To be fair, she had words. She just couldn’t arrange them into meaningful sentences.


Incumbent State Sen. Jeff Wentworth, meanwhile, fought off charges that he is insufficiently conservative during a Republican Party primary cycle in which the mere RINO allegation has proved to be politically fatal across the state.  Going head-to-head for a state senate seat that encompasses western San Marcos and Hays County, Campbell and Wentworth were the top attractions at a North Hays County Republican Group program this weekend at a church in Dripping Springs, a GOP stronghold.

On primary Election Day in  Hays County in May, Campbell won more than 52 percent, 4,368 votes, against her two better-funded opponents, Wentworth and former Texas Railroad Commission chair Elizabeth Ames Jones. Bolstered by a strong showing in his native San Antonio, Wentworth pulled off a modest plurality districtwide but fell far short of an outright majority. He now faces Campbell in a second round of voting in the July 31 runoff election.

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10 thoughts on “Brad Rollins’ Blog: Donna Campbell flubs on major issues at Hays GOP forum (with audio)

  1. That’s the problem with Campbell. She seems to shoot from the hip with glib responses. Human composition by body weight, for example, can vary from 79% in an infant to as low as 45% in an obese adult. An average for adults would be about 57% according to physiology texts.

    This tendency to play on being a doctor will make many people see her as an authority, but her knowledge of medicine has nothing whatever to do with her ideas about public policy. Wentworth provides by far the steadiest hand when it comes to public policy. While he is far more conservative than I am generally, I see him as honest and I know that he is willing to listen to all sides when it comes to making good public policy, which is the role of a legislator, after all. It takes more than a big ego to be a good public servant. I would rather have someone that knows something about public policy issues, than a know-it-all about everything.

  2. Jeff Wentworth had an equally bad debate at the San Marcos Republican Forum back in May (in contrast, Donna received a standing ovation). Debates have very little effect on this size elections unless they are televised to a large crowd, which this event wasn’t.

  3. What I’d like to understand is why, if Wentworth has done such a great job, do we need to index gasoline taxes to inflation as he suggested? Has he voted to take money from the dedicated funds in the transportation budget to “balance” the general budget? Why didnt he have the guts to make the decisions to reduce the programs that are eating up the budget? Smoke and mirrors. Why are top TxDot officials enjoying a 42 percent pay increase at this time? The number of TxDot executives making over $200,000 has increased over 21 percent? What was Wentworth doing? Wanting to raise gasoline taxes? Maybe we need to look at fresh ways to solve problems rather than just assume that taxes have to go up.

    The long term, seasoned politicians always have a slick answer to why they really aren’t responsible for anything but can some how take credit for everything and Wentworth was dripping with snake oil Sunday night.

  4. TxDot has increased executive positions over $200,000 by 21% and you’re complaining?

    How can you not understand that means JOBS for TEXANS….hopefully competitive ones.

  5. Zach, I can only hope you meant to insert one of those emoticons meant to convey sarcasm. The purpose of TxDot is to build roads, not create jobs. I didn’t listen to the audio so maybe you’re making a joking reference to something said. I hope so.

  6. Wentworth has had more than 20 years to make a positive difference in our district. He fails to do so every year.

    Case in point, years ago when I asked him directly whether PEC needs better supervision and perhaps more self or government regulation, Wentworth stated he would just keep a wait and see stance. Apparently, Wentworth doesn’t care when people in his district are being ripped off.

    It’s time to get rid of Wentworth and while I am not in love with Dr. Campbell, I’m tempted to vote for this questionable woman, gung-ho christian and tea party favorite.

    No matter who voters select in this race we will inevitably get screwed again.

  7. I want yo commend you, Brad, on holding Dr. Campbell’s feet to the fire so strongly in this article. By completely ignoring everything Wenthworth said about raising gasoline taxes and his arrogance that evening you really helped Dr. Campbell and her supporters focus on the real issues of winning this race.

  8. Intrepid,

    Can you please concentrate on what’s going on in San Marcos that’s positive and stop with this Brad bashing. Your getting as old as the current political advertisements. Seems to me just about every article your writing some sort of bashing, enough already!

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