Static: Wednesday, October 24, 2002
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Chicken Hawk vs. Droopy Dawg

Lincoln and Douglas had the Great Debate. District Attorney Tim Curry and contender Terri Moore had the Surreal Debate, which played funnier and quirkier than Sunday night HBO. Set up by the Society of Professional Journalists, the debate found well-juiced journalists, attorneys, supporters, detractors, and the merely curious crowding into a private dining room at Joe T. Garcia’s to gobble tacos, guzzle margaritas, and lob grenades at the candidates. Moore displayed Type-A personality traits, jumping out of her chair, grabbing a microphone out of its holder, accentuating sentences with “baby,” as in, “I’m gonna shake it up, baby!” and presenting her thoughts as if she were delivering the closing argument in a televised celebrity murder case. “I haven’t been sitting on my butt behind some desk, delegating the job,” she said, jabbing at Curry for traditionally shunning the courtroom.

Curry was Type-ZZZZ, somewhere between light napping and deep slumber. He stayed seated, hunched over and speaking just loud enough to be heard by those at the front tables. Even after the audience yelled, “We can’t hear you,” Curry kept mumbling with his mouth nowhere near the microphone. Finally, the moderator pushed the mic to Curry’s barely moving lips. Despite his low-octane delivery, Curry came across as the poised, 30-year-veteran DA that he is.

The crowd heckled the incumbent throughout the debate, but Curry kept his cool and delivered a few zingers. “Terri taking credit for creating a gang unit is like Al Gore taking credit for creating the internet,” he said. And, after someone asked if he read the Fort Worth Weekly, Curry replied, “Not if I can help it.”

Some zingers flew back in his face. Curry said Moore’s major campaign contributor was suing Tarrant County, a move that “certainly doesn’t pass the smell test.” Someone hollered, “How can you smell it from your office?” Explaining why he didn’t prosecute cases, Curry characterized himself as a manager. The last time he tried a case, the trial lasted six months, and “when I got back,” he recalled, “the office had gone to hell in a handbasket.” Someone in the crowd shot back, “You lost that case didn’t you?” Curry was referring to the 1976 Cullen Davis murder trial.

Afterward, an attorney described her take: “I like both candidates, but it’s kind of like instant replay in the NFL. A referee’s decision can only be reversed by undisputable evidence.” Translation: Moore is worthy, but Curry has done a good job and doesn’t warrant ejection. “I’ll vote for Curry this time, and Moore next time,” the attorney said, sipping a margarita after planting a wet kiss on Curry’s forlorn face.


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