I've said before that I think the attacks against Rick Perry by the Bill White campaign are useless. For the most part, I still stand by that statement due to the fact that even Perry's supporters seem to have few expectations for the man. In short: Republicans see Perry for what he is, but they're not going to vote Democratic no matter what.*
One caveat to this: Charges of cronyism might have some staying power with moderates.
I say MIGHT because there's some evidence that White may be making some inroads. Granted, this evidence is anecdotal and based on a single, positive poll for Bill White conducted by a liberal polling agency (Public Policy Polling), but it's there. More conservative polling shops (Rasmussen) still have Perry with a comfortable lead.
Another reason it could work is simple: It's pretty true. Perry has a long history of appointing those who have given to or aided his campaign. It's very, very good to be a Perry supporter once he gets elected. These are the types of political issues that are resonating with the voting public these days. The question for Democrats is: Can they make it resonate enough to gloss over their, very unpopular in Texas, Party platform?
One attack that I don't think is going to work is the chicken attacks. It's an easy attack to make, but one that Perry can easily stave-off by making note of the fact that his current campaign is going out of its way to ignore campaign tradition. No money wasted on yard signs, no speaking with editorial boards, and (by extension) no debates with terrible moderators and Austin press-pool lifers playing a ginned up game of stump the politician. Sure, it's real red-meat for Bill White partisans, but unlikely to move the needle with anyone else. And Bill White partisans are not enough to win this election.
One last point: IF Bill White is going to continue to flick the ethics and influence switch then he had better be ready to answer for his own actions. He's not exactly a rookie when it comes to the politics of influence. Or are we supposed to forget his developer-friendly actions while Mayor of Houston?
*It should be noted that this type of blind partisanship is a two-way street. How else do you explain the Democrats support for probably the worst down-ballot slate of candidates in recent history? A convicted check-forger, a former undocumented alien with strong labor ties, support from the Communist Party USA & no High School diploma, a perennial candidate & an avowed critic of Texas' #1 jobs driver. Really?