State Rep. Jim Keffer’s first memory of politics is from 1964, when he campaigned with his mother for the Republican presidential challenger, Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater.
President Lyndon Johnson was from Texas, and Keffer has said that 1964 effort involved “getting yelled at, primarily.”
That prepared him well for 20 years in the Texas Legislature, which will come to end when Keffer, R-Eastland, steps down at the end of his current term.
Keffer has quietly shouldered the load of promoting Texas business growth and success, at various times chairing committees on economic development, finance and natural resources.
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Representing a district that stretches from Cresson west toward Abilene and south to Brownwood, he argued for the interests of rural Texans, including mineral production and particularly for protecting rural public schools.
In recent years, he took on the continuing fight for more transparency in campaigns and against “dark money,” the secret gifts to political organizations, such as Midland-funded Empower Texans, that lobby lawmakers and churn out propaganda but never identify phantom donors.
That’s a fight Keffer should continue.