Money for endorsement allegations fly

HOUSTON Former candidate for Houston mayor Roy Morales says he's not endorsing anyone. He just wanted to let his supporters know how the remaining candidates for mayor felt about what he calls the important issues.

So he called Annise Parker and Gene Locke and asked them to take part in a mailer answering questions about five conservative issues. Morales asked for both campaigns to split the costs of the mailer, which was about $64,000, and answer questions about conservative issues, such as immigration.

Parker agreed and paid the money. Locke said he did not want to take part.

"Mr. Locke, like I said, had the opportunity," said Morales. "Same terms, but refused, because he couldn't answer the questions."

The flyer came out with Parker's responses only, and without Locke's. Now, Locke says Parker taking part in the mailer is just paying for an endorsement and he never wanted to take part.

"I'm not going to buy the support of anybody," said Locke. "I will not promise anything and I will not pay any money to get an endorsement. And I'm certainly disappointed that others have chosen to do that."

"We paid for the mailer to a direct mail vendor," said Parker campaign manager Adam Harris. "It went directly to the mail house, who then went on and sent the mail out. That's exactly what you are supposed to do in a campaign"

Morales insists he is not endorsing either of the candidates. He just wanted his supporters to be informed when they vote. The runoff election is this Saturday, December 12.

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