A crowd of supporters greeted Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison at Zula’s Coffee House in downtown Waxahachie with signs, applause and cheers of support Tuesday afternoon. During her time in Waxahachie, Hutchison spoke about the changes she will make if elected governor.

“Thank you so much for what you are doing here and helping me in so many ways. I’m so honored by the Waxahachie (Newspapers Inc.) endorsement. I really am because it means a lot and it will make a difference. It is going to make a difference that we have a new governor for Texas. Let me tell you why,” Hutchison said.

“There is no question that if Rick Perry is elected for four more years we will have no changes in the Texas Department of Transportation. We will not have any changes in help for private property owners. Only if I’m elected for governor can we see that TxDOT will be ripped out and started all over. Even the legislature has said TxDOT is a mess,” she said.

Hutchison told supporters there are problems that need to be addressed or the state will fall behind – problems that current Gov. Rick Perry is ignoring, including education, private property rights and ethic reform.

“We have to address the problems that we face or we will fall behind. Education, a 30 percent high school dropout rate. We will not be able to create the good jobs of the future with that kind of record. Gov. Perry think it’s OK. I will tackle that issue … so our high-schoolers know that they should stay and get a high school degree with a skill, trade or technical vocation training that will at least give them a good job in the future. And, of course, to encourage them and give them the prerequisites to go to college, that should be our goal in education,” she said.

Hutchison said it is time for ethic reform in the state’s capital and noted a dangerous precedent of cronyism is taking place. She said lobbyists have been making increasingly frequent visits to the governor’s office.

“All of a sudden we have lobbyists rotating in and out of the governor’s office making sweetheart deals with contacts that are no-bid contracts for the Trans Texas Corridor with his friend and the company that his friend represented. … The governor spent $130 million taxpayer dollars on the Trans Texas Corridor, which is the road to nowhere. It is essential that we rip out the Trans Texas Corridor and it will not be dead until I am governor of Texas,” she said.

“In ethics reform I am going to ask the legislature for a constitutional amendment to let the people decide if they want term limits for governor. Two terms, eight years, is enough. We should not have one person controlling every board and every commission and the board of regents of our great universities. It is time for a change,” she said.

Hutchison urged people to go to the polls and cast their ballot during early voting, which lasts until Friday, or on Election Day, which is March 2. If elected as governor, Hutchison said she would be able to help rebuild the Republican Party, which has lost support under Perry’s leadership.

“It is time that we had a governor that will lead our party to victory. Who will talk to Texans and say that results are more important than politics? March 2 is Texas Independence Day and we can declare our independence for cronyism, from 30 percent dropout rates and from what is creeping into Austin that is hurting our future,” she said.

“We can do better. I am the governor who will produce ethics reform. Help me get the word out now, between now and Friday, which is early voting, and March 2. We can do better in Texas to assure that the Texas of the future is as good for our children as we have had growing up in the greatest state in America – that is my commitment to you,” she said. “If we want to keep conservative leadership for Texas for the long term I am the one who can do it. I’m ready for that responsibility. We can do it together if you help me.”

Contact Andrew at andrew.branca@wninews.com or 469-517-1458.