Timing, mixed messages hurt White during campaign

AUSTIN, Texas - He was the first Democrat in a generation said to have a real shot at winning the Texas governor's race, but Bill White picked an awful year to stage a revival of his moribund party. And his scattershot campaign rhetoric never threw Gov. Rick Perry off his game.

Even if White had run a flawless campaign, many voters were unwilling to look past a party label that - long tarnished in conservative Texas - has been dragged down by an unpopular President Barack Obama and a federal government that many see as reckless and out of touch.

White conceded to Perry in a speech at a Houston hotel to cheering supporters.