By Steve Miller | Texas Watchdog
AUSTIN — The public can be prevented from knowing the candidates for president of Angelo State University because of a state law passed in 1993 and updated last session.
A story in the San Angelo-Standard Times reports that there are four finalists in the search, but the university will not reveal them due to the law, stemming from a bill authored by then-state Sen. Bill Haley, D-Center, and updated by state Sen. Judith Zaffirini.
Zaffirini, D-Laredo, defended the secrecy, telling the newspaper that “by keeping the names confidential, and avoiding releasing information that could put a presidential candidate’s current job at jeopardy, we get a better selection of candidates.”
In December 2010, Zaffirini received a $1,000 contribution from lobbyist Ben Barnes of the Ben Barnes Group, which that year was among the stable of lobbyists for the Texas Tech University System, which oversees Angelo State. Barnes also contributed to Zaffirini in 2006 and 2011.