For whom the bell tolls…..The recent decision by a three-judge federal panel in San Antonio has ripped the heart out of Charlie Howard’s State House Dist. 26 and mandates whole new boundaries for the upcoming election.
By the way, I received a newsletter from Howard last week which made no mention of his announced retirement although it was printed on cheaper paper and contained more information than the usual expensive do-nothing mail pieces that he mails out at taxpayer expense. Although Howard has said he will not seek another term, he will supposedly serve out this term which runs through 2012.
But back to District 26 and the Republican debacle shaping up there. The new District 26 puts Sugar Creek, the heart of the Republican Party in Fort Bend, in Democrat Ron Reynolds District 27. It takes Commonwealth in First Colony and puts it and Greatwood in the new District 30 which also includes parts of Wharton and Jackson counties. It puts parts of Richmond and all of Pecan Grove in District 28, represented by Dr. John Zerwas.
So for District 26, two of its largest straight Republican voting areas – Sugar Creek and Commonealth–have been placed in other districts.
I’m politically math challenged, but those who aren’t and spend a lot of time doing this, tell me that to new District 26 voted 49% for Obama in 2008. This means that Jacquie Chaumette and Rick Miller, who have been campaigning in Sugar Creek, Commonwealth, Greatwood and parts of Richmond, will now have to spend a lot of time in Mission Bend which has been added to their district.
Well, I don’t know how much time Rick Miller has spent knocking on doors anyway, but I do know that Chaumette has been working and walking neighborhoods for a long time now.
Sonal Bhuchar, who had also announced she was running in that district, reportedly lives in Commonwealth, so unless she is going to fire up the old moving van, she will have to run in the new District 30 in Needville, Wharton, and Austin against announced candidates Craig LaTulle and Lee Duggan III. District 26, where she doesn’t live anymore is rumored to have a heavily Asian voting bloc. The Democratic rumored candidate is a young female Asian lawyer.
So there you go. Of course, these district lines are supposedly temporary for only the next election and are a result of the Republican overreaching the redistricting. It made the Democrats mad and they sued. The three judge panel was composed of two Republicans and one Democrat, but one of the Republicans has a Latino-sounding last name and lost an election to another Republican with no experience but a “white” sounding last name. He voted with the Democrat. Payback is hell, I guess.
There are far wider implications for this than one would think. I’ve been around Fort Bend politics for over 30 years and I’ve seen the Sugar Creek bunch lord it over the Republican party in Fort Bend. They were the strength of Charlie Howard’s regime. Charlie was so anti-everything including education, a mainstay of everyone in Fort Bend’s concern, but he was impossible to dislodge because of the Sugar Creek/Commonwealth/Greatwood voting bloc. Most elected officials took their legislative concerns to other representatives in Austin because they had been told more than once in Austin that if Charlie was sponsoring a bill, it was DOA.
I don’t think we’ll ever see such a thing happen in Fort Bend politics again.
Now as I understand it, and I’ll admit I’m confused, the new election dates for the first day to file for a place on the ballot for the March 6, 2012 primary is November 28, 2011 (it’s too late to file for Precinct Chair).
The last day to file for a place on the ballot for the March 6, 2012 primary is December 15, 2011.
You will not find this information on our Fort Bend County election site. All they have is the Dec. 10 Houston run-off stuff. You’ll have to look on the Sec. of State site. Somebody needs to goose our local elections bunch. Please consider yourself goosed.
Jingle Bells……I’m growing to hate Christmas. Why? Because the season starts right after July 4!
Busted!…..The new census mandated that Fort Bend institute a vote for civil service which it did and which passed. But are the county leaders trying to negate it and mess it up in order to maintain control? The choice for the three-person commission to head it looks very suspicious. More about that next week. But just know this. People are watching and you know me. I tell it like I see it. You might can get away with it, but if I know, I tell.