'Stealth candidates' avoiding campaign trail

Republicans considered shoe-ins in Texas barring mistakes

SAN ANTONIO – Several candidates for statewide office in Texas are keeping mostly out of sight as Election Day approaches, relying on tried-and-true political wisdom that says frontrunners who avoid mistakes usually get elected.

In this case, since Democrats have not elected a statewide office-holder in 20 years, it is Republicans who are generally the stealth candidates in this election.

In the governor's race, Democrat Wendy Davis danced earlier this week with a crowd on the East Side. Her Republican opponent, Greg Abbott,  appeared at a rally on the North Side.

However, it has been different in the race for lieutenant governor, where Democrat Leticia Van de Putte has been engaging voters all over the state while Republican Dan Patrick has been seen as somewhat reclusive.

Polls show Abbott and Patrick far ahead of their Democratic counterparts.

Democrat Mike Collier is running for comptroller and has been available to the media.

"I'm a certified public accountant and I'll be the first CPA to serve as comptroller of the state of Texas." Collier said.

He painted his Republican opponent Glenn Hegar, who was unavailable for an interview, as a career politician who would use the comptroller's post as a stepping stone to higher office.

"Let's take politics out of that job," Collier said. "It's a very important job."

Even those campaigning on behalf of a candidate can fall into this category. Take, for example, Cecelia Abbott. While her husband has been very active on the campaign trail, she was not answering reporter questions during a campaign stop at a GOP phone bank in San Antonio.

Traditional reasoning is that Republicans running statewide in Texas will win unless they make a mistake.

And the traditional way to make a mistake is to say something in public that changes voters' perceptions in a negative way. Or have your spouse say something wrong.

Voters interviewed outside the Bexar County Courthouse Thursday were foggy on many of the candidates running for statewide office and felt stealth campaigns do not benefit a public that needs to know more -- not less -- about candidates