FORT WORTH Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst suggested messaging may be the reason why he's not as popular with Tea Party voters as other conservative candidates in the state. Still, the veteran Republican reiterated his credentials are as solid as anyone else's in the GOP.
Dewhurst made the comments in a one-on-one interview with WFAA's Inside Texas Politics, which airs Sunday at 9:05 a.m.
We had a July 31 runoff in which we had a hard time finding our voters, Dewhurst said. We made some mistakes. I had a brand new team that didn't get me. But my compliments to Senator Cruz. He ran a disciplined campaign. That was then. This is now.
Dewhurst said he didn't doubt the voters' ability to judge his conservative record for themselves.
Over the last 10 years, I've cut taxes 51 times, he said. This year I cut taxes a 52nd, a 53rd and a 54th time. I enjoy having my hands involved in the machinery of running state government. I think over the last 10 years we have made the state better.
Dewhurst was in North Texas Thursday night at the Fort Worth Club where he attended a private reception for the Greater Fort Worth Builders Association.
On Friday morning, the Senate reconvenes to vote on controversial redistricting maps.
The lieutenant governor has spent all year reshaping his conservative credentials after last summer's unexpected loss to Ted Cruz.
Dewhurst faces Republican challengers in next year's GOP primary from Jerry Patterson, Commissioner of the General Land Office, and Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples.
Dewhurst did not get every issue added to the special session that he requested from Gov. Perry including school choice, campus carry and drug-testing for Texans receiving federal assistance. Still, Dewhurst said he doubted Perry would call a second session to take up those conservative causes.
Watch the entire unedited interview with the Lieutenant Governor Sunday morning at 9 on Inside Texas Politics.