Quick now. Who was Teddy Kennedy's running mate in 1980? If you didn't immediately answer Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D), you've haven't been in Texas lately.

That bit of intelligence comes from the political ads of Texas Rep. Jim Collins (R), who is trying to unseat Bentsen and has decided that the path to office is to wrap Kennedy around poor Lloyd.

The Collins ad, written by conservative pollster Arthur Finklestein, says that in 1980, Kennedy decided the way to win the presidency was to run with Bentsen. The ad then zooms in on a Texas magazine article touting a Kennedy-Bentsen ticket.

Kennedy did put out a list of seven possible running mates just before the 1980 Democratic National Convention, but Bentsen's name wasn't on it.

Collins' ads blame Bentsen for nearly everything but the heartbreak of psoriasis. They cite his vote to transfer control of the Panama Canal as evidence that Bentsen "spends more time listening to Ted Kennedy than to the people of Texas."

Bentsen is also blamed for financing Washington's Metro while Houston's drivers sit in massive traffic jams. The ads also accuse him of following in the footsteps of Kennedy and other "northeast liberals" in supporting the bill to give the District of Columbia two senators, as many as they have in the whole state of Texas.