This article in the Houston Chronicle has quite a few interesting tidbits, a couple of which surprised me.
Unsurprising: “Faculty members have contributed $406,384 to Democratic candidates or committees in the 2008 campaign season — 71 percent of their political donations. Republicans have received $135,216, or 24 percent, of donations through the end of March. University personnel gave $27,915 to nonpartisan political action committees or third party candidates.”
Surprising: HRC received $129,721 in donations, while BO received only $104,911. I would have thought the academia, even TX academia, would have leaned toward Obama. McCain only received $25,130.
Unsurprising: “University of Texas [my alma mater] faculty sent the most money to candidates and political committees. UT personnel donated $227,645 — 74 percent to Democrats, 19 percent to Republicans and 7 percent to nonpartisan causes.”
Surprising: Even TX A&M faculty gave more to Democrats! Do I need to remind anyone that Bush I chose A&M to host his presidential library and Def. Secretary was president of the university before leaving to join Bush II’s administration. The current president is a Hispanic female, Dr. Elsa Murano – which is pretty effing fantastic.
Unsurprising and Surprising: Rice (unsurprising) and Texas Christian University (surprising!!) were at the forefront of Democratic donations, with 97% of the faculty of both schools giving to Democrats. The TCU numbers really surprised me. I live in Fort Worth, near TCU and most of the students I come into contact with drive Range Rovers, Audis, monster trucks, many a lexus, and the odd Toyota. These kids have more spending money than the GNP of Cameroon. In Texas, big money generally translates into Republican devotion, so it’s good to see that the students aren’t necessarily a reflection of the faculty. In fact, I wonder if being around so much wealthy spawn have pushed faculty members away from the wealth-gap-encouraging politics of Republicans.