The stuffed elephant and stacks of styrofoam cups welcomed a room full of voters at the science spectrum.
"I'm going to stay on the issues," said Jane Cansino, one of four Republicans running for County Commissioner, trying to set herself apart. "I have proven conservative leadership," she said. But not far away, was Bill McCay with leadership of his own. "Proven leadership, I've got 24 years of business experience," he said. Across the room, the question got the best of Bill Hillstrom. "That's a hard question, to set yourself apart," he said.
Then there was W.L. Matheny. "I'm not going to say I have all the answers," he said. Earlier in the evening, his name had been mangled by a certain reporter. "I mispronounced your name on the six o'clock news," said NewsChannel 11's Burt Mummolo. "Yeah, they said you did," he chuckled. "I'm sorry," said Mummolo. "Don't worry about it, I've been called worse," laughed Matheny. Hopefully it's never been pronounced "Democrat."
Bill Hillstrom is big on roads. "Lobbying hard for roadways, especially Woodrow Road, Indiana, and University Avenue to see improvement. I hear so many complaints about those roadways being unsafe," he said.
Jane Cansino knows a thing or two about ag. "I have a farm so I understand ag issues for West Texas," she said.
W.L. Matheny does not like taxes. "So you will not raise taxes?" he was asked. "Well, I'll vote against it, but you've got three other county commissioners, so you're outnumbered to start with," he said.
Bill McCay is familiar with the justice system. "My motivation to run is from growing up in a county jail," he said. That is, on the right side of the bars. His mother cooked for the inmates, his father was in law enforcement. "Basically, grown up in a courthouse," he said.
As for money, that campaign oil..."Very small, this is a grass roots deal," said Matheny. "We've raised about $15,000," said Cansino. "My chest is pretty low," said Hillstrom. "It's not so much how much, but what you do with it," said McCay.