Chronicle political writer Alan Bernstein recently wrote about a new entrant to Texas politics , Houstonian Michael Skelly. His name will be familiar to those of you in the wind power business since he’s head of development for Houston’s Horizon Wind.
Wind Power! Michael Skelly’s YouTube site announcing his candidacy.
Skelly is aiming to unseat Rep. John Culberson,(R-Houston), who represents District 7 which runs from the Texas Medical Center to parts of the far west side of Harris County.
What may separate Skelly from any other Democrat could be money. His own money.
Skelly was with the company when it was known as Zilkha Energy (as in Houston financier Selim Zilkha and his son, Michael) and was sold to Goldman Sachs in March 2005 for somewhere south of $1 billion. As a manager he likely saw a decent payday from that.
Goldman then sold the company to Portuguese utility Energias de Portugal for $2.2 billion in March of this year. The windfall from that transaction was likely even bigger, but how much Skelly wouldn’t say:
Skelly, brought to the United States as a child after being born to Irish parents in England, would not discuss how much money he will put into his campaign. Candidates can spend an unlimited amount on their own behalf, and in past Houston-area campaigns, some have laid out more than $3 million to get elected.
“Big Oil” has greased the wheels of Texas politics for more than a century. Is Skelly the vanguard of “Big Green”?