Rep. Rick Noreiga (D-Houston), candidate for U.S. Senate, held a news conference at 1 p.m. today. Most of the news conference was the usual niceties. Noreiga is excited by the enthusiasm that he sees from Democrats; he believes the voters are ready for change; and he's excited to be on the same ticket with Barack Obama and believes that the South Texas voters who backed Hillary Clinton will also turn out for Obama. That said, I asked Obama whether the Trans-Texas Corridor will be an issue in his race (and mentioned U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison's very public dust-up with Gov. Rick Perry on that issue). "More than anything else on that issue that is important to Texans is the government's seizure of property," Noreiga said, agreeing with the proposition that it will be an issue in his race.
In addition to transportation, Noreiga repeated his endorsement of the Warner-Lieberman climate change bill and slammed U.S. Sen. John Cornyn for not endorsing it.
One rather amusing exchange occurred between the Houston Chronicle's Rick Casey and Noriega. During the press conference, Noriega was asked about his fundraising. He noted that he is not getting money from drug companies and their PACs. So Casey asked Noreiga, if elected, would he take that money. Noreiga wouldn't answer Casey's question, saying he "would cross that bridge when he comes to it."