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Says He’s Not in the Race

August 30, 1989

DALLAS (AP) _ Oilman and takeover strategist T. Boone Pickens said today he will not run for Texas governor because he could not give all his attention to the state’s problems.

″I can’t make that commitment at this stage in my life,″ Pickens said. ″I’ve decided without regrets that I have other challenges and other responsibilities.″

Pickens made the disclosure to about 500 people at a Rotary luncheon. He said he must devote full attention to his business.

Pickens, 61, chairman of Mesa Limited Partnership of Amarillo, signed a contract on a $2 million home in the Dallas area earlier this month, the Dallas Times Herald reported Tuesday. His firm’s financial division also is moving from Amarillo to downtown Dallas.

Although Pickens said the moves were for business and not political reasons, he also said he faced some business problems that could block his path in a race for governor.

His partnership announced a $13.4 million loss for the second quarter of 1989 and he said today the company will likely post a loss in the third quarter.

″Mesa will weather the tough times, but I have a responsibility to my shareholders to see this through,″ Pickens said.

Pickens initially said he would announce a decision by Aug. 15, then later delayed that announcement until the end of the month.

Republicans who have announced for governor so far are Midland oilman- busines sman Jack Rains, who was secretary of state until resigning this summer, Railroad Commissioner Kent Hance, and oilman Clayton Williams of Midland.

The only announced Democratic candidate is state Treasurer Ann Richards.

Pickens, a feared corporate raider who has chased some of the biggest U.S. companies, made headlines earlier this summer by trying to get three seats on the board of directors of a Japanese headlight manufacturer.

Shareholders of Koito Manufacturing Co. voted overwhelmingly against naming Pickens to the board, even though he was the company’s largest shareholder with 20.2 percent of the stock.

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