New Book Suggests Texas’ Ideas Are Spreading
When Texas Gov. Rick Perry was on the campaign trail, he often said the best way to fix America was to put more Texans in Washington, D.C. That Texas influence in national politics is the topic of Gail Collins’ new book “As Texas Goes….”
In the book, Collins looks at how different Texas policies were formed, and then how they jumped to the national stage. KUT’s Ben Philpott spoke with Collins about her book.
On Texas’ influence:
What we’ve got right now is a country that’s very much influenced, I think, by the spirit of the Texas conservative resurgence of the last 20, 30 years. And that began at the same time as Ronald Regan, but they’re very different in many ways.
Collins sees political differences in the country as being not between Republicans and Democrats but between two other groups of people.
I’ve always thought that’s it’s always in America, the real division politically has been between the empty spaces people and the crowded spaces people. If you live in a crowded place, you appreciate government because you see it operating every day around you. … If you live in an empty place, it’s hard to see the point of government. … In Texas, I think there’s a real, genuine, physical feeling that they are in an empty place, that they do live in an empty space, even though 80 percent of the people in Texas live in metropolitan areas, there’s a feeling of there being room all around, and that sort of encourages the feeling that government sort of gets in the way.
You can hear Collins read from “As Texas Goes…” Monday at 7 p.m. at Book People, 603 N. Lamar.