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Patterson Endorses Democrat over Bush for Land Commissioner

In backing Democratic candidate Miguel Suazo, former Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson blames incumbent George P. Bush for alleged mismanagement of The Alamo and post-Harvey recovery.


George P. Bush, left, and Jerry Patterson.

Former Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, a Republican, is endorsing a Democrat for his old job. That's after he waged an unsuccessful campaign to wrest the GOP nomination from incumbent Commissioner George P. Bush.

Patterson has been a Republican for more than 30 years, heading the General Land Office (GLO) from 2003 to 2015. So why is he backing Democratic attorney Miguel Suazo over Bush?

"Well, I mean, it's pretty simple," Patterson says. "My loyalty to my state and my loyalty to The Alamo trumps any loyalty to my party."

Patterson made Bush's alleged mismanagement of The Alamo a key issue in his primary challenge to Bush. He also blames Bush for delays in rolling out the GLO's home repair program after Harvey. "And that was a decision made solely to be a fiscal conservative and look good in the next election," Patterson says. "To me that's unsatisfactory."

Bush's office did not respond to a request for comment.


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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew Schneider is the senior reporter for politics and government at Houston Public Media, NPR's affiliate station in Houston, Texas. In this capacity, he heads the station's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments...

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