Poor Dave

Poor Dave, poor Dave, he has all the money and none of the power.

Worth an estimated $200 million, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst drastically outspent his opponent, Ted Cruz, in the GOP primary for US Senator. He still lost, though, and by large margins.

While this is certainly one of the few exceptions to the golden rule (He with the gold makes the rules), it causes one to wonder about the integrity of any campaign in the future by Dewhurst. A lot people pontificated that Dewhurst would eventually challenge Perry in the primary, but most have moved away from that view.

Just after the July 31st defeat, mum was the word on Dewhurst’s political future. However, it is now being widely reported that David Dewhurst will run for re-election in 2014. This seems all good, but for one small problem. Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples told the Texas Tribune that he is in “no matter who’s running”. Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson is already all in, website and all. Further, some are speculating Comptroller Susan Combs will run for the number two post. Dewhurst losing re-election would be simply humiliating, but perhaps humiliation on the other side is what the Democrats need.

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I promise the only post about Oklahoma

I know I should be writing about Texas, but this is so gosh darn interesting. A few months ago, I went to the very bottom of Oklahoma with my family to go fishing at Lake Texoma. We stayed at a little hotel on the border with Texas that had local news from the sooner state. Just as I was about to doze off, getting ready for an early rise, I witnessed a commercial that possibly renewed my faith in the electorate.

It was a federal prosecutor named Rob Wallace. He was running in the Democratic Primary for congress, Dan Boren’s seat to be specific. Boren is about as blue dog as blue dogs get: he voted for, among other things: Cut, Cap, and Kill Medicare, and the “Forcible Rape” bill. His district, OK-2, has a rating of R+14. Now, Boren was able to avoid the fate of the similarly situated Chet Edwards when it came to 2010, Boren was re-elected with 56% of the vote. However, he seemed to not have a big appetite for another challenge, so he announced his retirement, and it seemed that the only Democratic district in Oklahoma was lost.

But then a ray of hope came on the television at the La Quinta: Rob Wallace. This southern looking, southern sounding gentleman explained clearly to the camera that we favored main street over wall street and that corporations were not people. A genteel, less smelly of the message of Occupy Wall Street, and the people ran with it. For the record, I think Wallace is pro-life, anti-gay marriage, and open about religion and politics, but he is the type of populist that the Democrats need to win. I immediately followed his facebook page when I got home.

Tonight, Rob Wallace defeated his opponent with 57% of the vote to win the Democratic nomination for Boren’s seat. What’s more, over 43,000 people voted in the Democratic runoff, while only 21,000 voted in the Republican runoff. Even moreso, the race is now listed as a tossup. I am thinking about donating a few bucks to this guy, and I am definitely going to keep on watching.

Donald Lee, 1934-2012

Donald Lee, a relatively obscure former State Representative from the valley who had gone missing from a nursing home a few days ago, was found dead in a nearby field Sunday. Lee, who had served in the Texas House from 1981 to 1987 representing parts of Brownsville and McAllen, had been a champion of the interests of people in the valley.

Evidently, Lee had only moved to the facility on August 20, and somehow disappeared without explanation three days later. The police said there were no signs of foul play, but irrespective this is a tragic, sad event. Texas has lost another good man, we don’t have many left.

The Statesman has more.

Ernest McGowen, 1925-2012

Ernest McGowen, Sr., the second African-American elected to the Houston City Council and the father of the city’s Affirmative Action program, died at the age of 87 on Sunday.

McGowen was the first Councilmember for the northern District B, being first elected in 1980 after a successful lawsuit brought single member districts to Houston (something our Austinite friends are still fighting for) and stayed until term limits forced him out in 1994. He was a major advocate during the Whitmire Administration for increased affirmative action programs. Among his accomplishments were being the sponsor of the MWBE program (minority and woman-owned business enterprise), writing the ordinance prohibiting support of apartheid South Africa, supporting striking Sanitation Workers, and helping to establish MLK day as a city holiday.

Former City Councilmember Anthony Hall, State Senator Rodney Ellis, and U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee, who all served with McGowen on the Council, commended McGowen’s record and lauded his memory.

RIP Councilmember. I was always remember him as a pioneer, a hero, and a fighter always for what is right.

The Houston Chronicle has the full story.

Howdy!

Let me introduce myself, well not really. I grew up in Houston and took a special interest in politics from an early age. I blogged a little bit, starting in the 10th grade, mainly about local politics. I worked my last three years of High School for Mayor Parker, and so I have (or at least had) a good insight into Bagby Street Politics. Early this summer, right after graduating from High School, I worked with Judge Gilberto Hinojosa at the Texas Democratic Convention as he made his ultimately successful campaign for Chair. Now I am a freshman in college in Boston, Massachusetts. Obviously, I am a somewhat left-leaning person, so it would seem that Massachusetts is the optimal place for me, and heck I might stay up here forever, but I still have a unique place in my heart for Texas politics. There is something special about it. That being said, I decided the best way to stay up on it was to write about it, so here I go.

2013 Comes Early

The astute will know that Houston City Councilmember Mike Sullivan won the GOP primary for Harris County Tax Collector a few months ago and, as promised, will resign in time for a special election in November. I’m not going to go into why Sullivan might be one of two Republicans I endorse this year, because that is a different story, but I would like to talk about the race for his successor. District E is comprised of Kingwood and Clear Lake, and such is the most conservative district in the city (Maybe “G” too). Sullivan has steered clear of being overly partisan (cough cough Mr. Berry), but I do not know if his followers will keep up the tradition.

First, there is Dave Martin. Martin is a school board member from Humble, and is quite the heavyweight of district. He is first in the ballot order and most definitely the frontrunner. Then there is Elizabeth Perez. Perez, just like everyone else, ran for the Houston City Council At-large 2 in 2011, and finished near the bottom. Evidently she is a Hispanic, Jewish Republican. She does not have a website (neither do the other candidates), but she does have a facebook page with about 180 likes (although it is rolled over from 2011). Finally, we have Lonnie Allsbrook, another retread. He ran for At-large 1 in 2009 and finished near the bottom, and has since moved from the Heights to Kingwood. Yes, Allsbrook is openly gay, but I would not so quickly categorize him as a Democrat. He endorsed the more conservative Costello in the run off in At-large 2009 after he was eliminated.

Most interesting, however, is how Kingwood dominated the candidate pool is. I guess the people of Clear Lake shouldn’t complain if they aren’t even willing to field a candidate. I believe Perez is from Meadowcreek, not Kingwood, but as she is by no means running on an anti-Kingwood platform.