There is surprisingly little off limits among ambitious politicians on both sides of the aisle. In the pursuit of power, virtually any person, place, or thing can potentially be exploited for professional expediency.
In Texas (a state being systematically targeted by Democrats hoping to recapture control), however, the gamesmanship has noticeably ramped up in recent years. One of the Lone Star State’s most prominent Democrat rising stars, U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, exhibited that trend in his ongoing clash with GOP State Sen. Dan Patrick.
Patrick, who received an endorsement for his lieutenant governor bid from regional gas convenience store chain Buc-ee’s, touted the support in a Facebook post. Along with a photo of Patrick and the chain’s mascot, a beaver, the post indicated that the Republican hopeful is “very proud to have the support of Buc-ee.”
Castro seized on this development with his own social media post. He used his Twitter account to excoriate the brand for its participation in the political process. His first of several posts and retweets on the subject portrayed Patrick as a “fear mongering immigrant basher” and began what he seemed to hope would be a full-fledged boycott of the chain.
Won’t gas up there anymore since they support a fear mongering immigrant basher. “@KoltenParker: Buc-ee’s endorses Dan Patrick for Lt. Gov.
— Joaquin Castro (@Castro4Congress) March 10, 2014
Patrick, however, is no stranger to controversy and was able to capitalize on the manufactured controversy. On his Twitter account, he suggested Buc-ee the Beaver is more prepared for the political realm than Castro.
The Republican’s supporters on the site used the opportunity to express their support for both Patrick and the convenience store brand.
— David Guion (@one24worship) March 15, 2014
For the record, Buc-ee’s has since clarified that the chain’s owners, not the chain itself, is supporting Patrick. In any case, it doesn’t seem that Castro’s attempt to sully the brand made any real dent in its business. If anything, it likely gave customers loyal to its competitors an incentive to pay Buc-ee a visit.
–B. Christopher Agee
Have an idea for a story? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo Credit: Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 3.0 (Creative Commons)
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom