Governor Preston E. Smith was alleged to have benefited from stock trading in the early 1970s. In an appearance (a roast) before Austin’s Headliners Club in early 1971, Smith paraphrased the Bible: “Let he who is without stock cast the first rock!” The joke received loud applause, but Smith was not re-elected for another term.
Wikipedia: Preston Smith (Texas)
Preston Earnest Smith (March 8, 1912 – October 18, 2003) was a Democratic governor of Texas from 1969-1973, and the lieutenant governor from 1963-1969.
Smith was embroiled in the Sharpstown scandal stock fraud scheme of 1971 and 1972, which eventually led to his downfall. Smith lost his third term bid for the governorship of Texas to Dolph Briscoe of Uvalde in the Democratic primary in 1972.
Toward the end of his life, Smith worked as a political liaison officer for Texas Tech. After he died in Lubbock, the city airport was renamed in 2004 as Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport in his memory.
The Headliners Club of Austin
Welcome to the Headliners Club
The Headliners Club, celebrating its 50th anniversary in the year 2005, is Austin’s premier downtown private club. Located on the 21st floor of the Chase Tower at 221 West 6th Street, the Club enjoys unparalleled views of Austin and the surrounding countryside in all directions. The tastefully appointed rooms are perfectly suited for events ranging from dinner for two to formal receptions for several hundred persons. The membership of the Club includes Nobel Laureates, Texas Governors and other state and national political leaders, notable business executives and fascinating personalities from the fields of journalism, media and the arts.
To cast the first stone
Be the first to attack a sinner.
From the Bible, John 8:7 (King James Version):
So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
11 February 1971, Dallas (TX) Morning News, section A, pg. 23:
“Let Him Who Is Without Stock...”
by Richard Morehead
AUSTIN—“Let him who is without stock throw the first rock,” said Gov. Preston Smith, brandishing a stone as he faced a skeptical audience at the Austin Headliner Club’s awards luncheon last weekend.
Paraphrasing the Bible’s eighth chapter of John, the state’s chief executive went ahead to make humorous points about the quick-profits stock deal by him and Dr. Elmer Baum, state Democratic chairman and banking board member.
18 February 1971, San Antonio (TX) Express, “Top Officials Gain Mainly Sympathy in Stock Deals,”:pg. 13A, col. 1:
“He who is without stock, let him cast the first rock,” quipped Gov. Preston Smith at a recent Headliners Club stag luncheon as he brandished a small boulder. There were no rocks thrown but plenty of laughter and loud applause.
Inside the Third House:
A Veteran Lobbyist Takes a 50-Year Frolic Through Texas Politics
by H. C. Pittman
Austin, TX: Eakin Press
PRESTON E. SMITH
House of Representatives 1945-1950
Lieutenant Governor 1963-1969
Governor of Texas 1969-1973
Brought down the rafters when he started his rebuttal remarks at the Headliners’ roast with “Let he who is without stock cast the first rock!”
Story last updated at 12:45 a.m. Tuesday, October 21, 2003
Gov. Smith worked way to top
In his first appearance outside the Capitol after his inauguration at Austin’s Headliner’s Club, the audience began to groan as he droned on in a dull voice with a shaggy dog story. But the punch line at the expense of humorist Cactus Pryor brought the house down and the governor loved it. It was Mr. Pryor who gave him the line which many folks still remember. State politics was involved in a stock scandal and Gov. Smith chose the same format (the stag luncheon) to use Mr. Pryor’s line.
“Let he who is without stock cast the first rock,” the governor declared.
It got him a standing ovation.
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Wednesday, September 19, 2007 • Permalink