NPT Capitol: TxDoT’s Houghton lashes out
Gilbert eventually retorted that Houghton was a hypocrite.
Thanks to the Austin Chronicle you can see footage of what happened below.
Follow the jump for the analysis of Texas Monthly’s Paul Burka.
Burka on Houghton:
“The level of mistrust of TxDOT is as high as it has ever been thanks to Commissioner Ted Houghton, who decided to do a little bomb-throwing of his own at the March 5 meeting of the Texas Highway Commission, calling one of the witnesses and the organization he represents “idiots.” Senator Hegar fired off a letter to Houghton, which included the following observations:
* I am … compelled to strongly denounce your comments to Mr. Hank Gilbert at the … meeting as completely out of line and wholly unacceptable.
* Regardless of the criticism you may have received over the last few years in your duties as a commissioner and regardless of your thoughts about Mr. Gilbert or the group he represents, he is a taxpayer, and it is extremely inconsiderate for you to dismiss him and the organization he represents as “idiots.” Anyone who holds the prestigious position of Texas transportation commissioner must take both the good and the bad that comes with that position and treat our fellow citrizens with respect; the same respect that he paid you in politely expressing his thoughts and opinions.
* [I]ncidents like this one only underscore the problems of the past and retard future progress. They certainly do nothing to change the perception of many of my legislative colleagues that TxDOT remains arrogant and unresponsive to the people it serves….
Lots of fodder here for the coming battle over TxDOT sunset.” [link]