There are seven contested judicial races at the local level in the Harris County Republican primary. Three feature incumbents and four are open seats. One seat is on the Court of Appeals, three are District Courts and one is a County Court. All told, there are 21 candidates vying for all these competitive contests. The following are our recommendations, bearing in mind that the vast majority of our readership are not Republicans. Accordingly, we have abridged our arguments.
1st COURT OF APPEALS, PLACE 3
This race has three good candidates that would serve their constituents well on the Court of Appeals. Dan Linebaugh has been a prolific attorney for many years, Chad Bridges has very strong ties to the Fort Bend County community and Russell Lloyd has invaluable experience in the legal system not shared by his opponents. The choice is yours, but we must admit our biases. Unfortunately, we were unable to receive any correspondence from the candidates, which drastically limits the scope of our knowledge about any possibly divergent political or legal issues.
Given that none of the members of this board reside in Fort Bend county, we see no reason to necessarily reward strong ties to that community, though we do acknowledge that the constituents of the 1st Court of Appeals outside of Harris County have probably been under-served. However, the experience of Lloyd has truly caught our attention. As a former District Court Judge, he would not require any on-the-job training in this important post. Accordingly, we urge a vote for Lloyd.
Click here to read the full endorsement!
Editorial note: This is the fifteenth in our series of electronic interviews with candidates in contested primaries at both the Statewide level and throughout Harris County. We have sent eight open-ended questions to each of the candidates. The following are verbatim copies of the questions sent out and the answers received.
Donna Detamore, candidate in the Republican primary for the 311th District Court (Harris County)
Texpatriate: What is your name?
DD: Donna Detamore
Click here to read the full interview!
The Houston Chronicle reports that Judge Denise Pratt, a family District Judge that had been investigated for wrongdoing, was officially cleared after a grand jury declined to indict her. Back in October, a frontpage article lambasted Judge Pratt for allegedly altering timestamps on her records after falling behind on court records. Shortly thereafter, the Houston Bar Association berated her for the issue, among others.
Judge Pratt has drawn a Democratic opponent next year. Sherri Cothrun, an attorney who previously run for Judge in 2010, will seek the post. Additionally, Pratt drew four Republican challengers in the primary: Donna Detamore, Alicia Franklin, Anthony Magdaleno and Philip Placzek. You see, the Republicans actually understand how elections work and are not so lazy as to pass the buck to others, but I digress.
The Republican Party had been considering kicking Judge Pratt off the ballot if charges went forward on the corruption, but since this ultimately did not happen, she will be free to continue in a grueling knifefight for the party’s nomination. As differences between parties go, Democrats are too chicken to do anything productive, and Republicans are far too caustic to play nicely. Accordingly, even though official criminal wrongdoing has been ruled out, do not expect her political opponents to ease up any time soon. To do so would be extraordinarily naive.
For background on what Judge Pratt was accused of, click here!