A Democrat running for Texas governor couldn't name the state's comptroller, attorney general or his own representatives during a newspaper editorial board meeting, the Austin American-Statesman reported Friday.
Asked whether he could name the state comptroller, Shami said, "Not at this point." Republican Susan Combs is the comptroller.
Asked who the attorney general is, Shami answered that he knows who is running: "Barbara" and "Ted Cruz."
Republican Greg Abbott is attorney general and is running for re-election. Barbara Ann Radnofsky is a Democratic candidate for attorney general. Ted Cruz is a Republican who last year announced his intention to run but never filed.
Although Shami, 67, has factories and his corporate headquarters in Houston's Harris County, he's registered to vote in bordering Montgomery County. Neither Thompson nor Turner represents Montgomery County. Turner, who like Thompson is a Houston Democrat, is a state representative.
"I'm a good reader," Shami said. "I follow politics nationally and internationally and locally all the time ... I've been watching it -- not inside it."
Shami campaign manager Vince Leibowitz called the meeting "a police interrogation."
"Many Texans don't know the answers to these questions," he said. "The Statesman is trying to make Farouk Shami look like a rube when he really is not."