The Forth Worth Star-Telegram reports that Joel Burns, a reputed member of the Forth Worth City Council, will not run in next year’s Democratic primary for Senate District 10. The district, currently held by Wendy Davis, will be open next year on account of the fact that Davis is running for governor. Burns was Davis’ successor on the City Council, and is a talented Democrat himself.
Back in 2010, well before anyone around the country had heard of Wendy Davis, Councilman Burns became a well-renowned in his own right. Burns, who is openly gay, delivered a tearful speech on the topic of bullying against LGBT children, drawing upon his own experiences. The speech made Burns a celebrity in the movement overnight, and it got international press. Since that time, Burns has been a major liberal in the Fort Worth area, long assumed to be aspiring towards higher office.
My friend Charles Kuffner first suggested to me the provisional candidacy of Burns if Davis, in fact, decided to run for the post, though I am sure Fort Worth insiders beat him to the point. In the three months since he made that posts, just about everyone in politics has assumed Burns would run. They were wrong.
This is very bad news for the Democrats. Now that Burns may be confidently crossed off the list of possible Democratic candidates, one must search far and wide for another suitable Democrat. Given the sorry state the Democrats have been doing recently recruiting candidates, I put the odds at slim-to-none. The Republicans, meanwhile, have four candidates already running. Most notably, the candidacy of Konni Burton, a somewhat well-funded challenger.
If the Republicans win SD10, it will mean they would hold a 20-11 advantage in the Senate, or roughly 65%. That IS NOT 2/3rds, but it is one vote away, and that may be just as significant. For example, Senator Eddie Lucio (D-Cameron County) voted with the Republicans this summer on abortion. If Wendy Davis had been replaced by a generic Republican, the Democrats could not have done anything to block or delay the bill –even in the regular session. Now is the time to panic.
Brains & Eggs has more.