Early Voting continues for the November 6 general and constitutional amendment election through Friday. Through Tuesday, the ninth day of early voting, less than 1.6% of registered voters in the state’s 15 most populous counties had cast ballots in person or by mail, which is less than half the turnout of the corresponding nine days in 2015.
Filing for the 2018 primary begins in 10 days.
LAND: Garland former firefighter and Save the Alamo founder historian Rick Range announced he would challenge Land Comm. George P. Bush (R) in the primary.
House Speaker: A working group of House Republican Caucus members has recommended changing the caucus’s bylaws to determine the caucus nominee for Speaker. The proposal calls for the caucus to meet the month before a regular session convenes and conduct as many votes as necessary until a nominee receives a majority vote of the caucus. That candidate would be declared the winner in a statement issued by the caucus chair. The vote would be non-binding, but any Republican member voting for another candidate would be publicly shown as opposing the majority will of the party’s members. The proposal would in effect be similar to a 2011 caucus vote in which Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) easily defeated a pair of challengers, both of whom withdrew before the full House elected him to another term as Speaker. The full Republican Caucus has called a December 1 meeting to discuss and possibly take action on the proposal.
HD36: Rep. Sergio Muñoz Jr. has appealed a $3M judgment against him and asked for a new trial, reported The Monitor’s Mitchell Ferman. U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez concluded that Muñoz failed to disclose to his client a business relationship with a judge presiding over a case he was handling. The judge was eventually removed from the case. Muñoz has denied any wrongdoing.
HD87: The Drew Brassfield campaign posted the audio of a robocall attacking Rep. Four Price’s (R-Amarillo) potential Speaker ambitions to its Facebook page. Brassfield accused Price of being on liberal Democrats’ wish list for Speaker. “I won’t be the guy Democrats want in charge,” Brassfield said, concluding the call. Price has said he is “interested” in becoming Speaker but has not filed paperwork declaring himself a Speaker candidate.
HD TBD: Garland resident Charlie Lauersdorf established a campaign committee for a state House race but did not indicate which seat he may seek. Portions of Garland lie in HD107, represented by Rep. Victoria Neave (R-Dallas); HD112, represented by Rep. Angie Chen Button (R-Garland); and open HD113, the seat being vacated by Rep. Cindy Burkett (R-Sunnyvale).
CD4: Emory music festival promoter Catherine Krantz established a campaign committee for a potential challenge of U.S. Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Rockwall) as a Democrat.
Bexar Co.: San Antonio attorney Joe Gonzales announced he would challenge District Attorney Nico LaHood in the Democratic primary.
Donna: Mayoral candidate Ernesto Lugo has suspended his campaign after District Judge J. Manuel Bañales found insufficient evidence supporting Lugo’s contention of residency. His name remains on the ballot with incumbent Irene Muñoz and two other challengers. If Lugo were to win the election, he would be ineligible to be sworn in as mayor.
U.S. Attorney: President Trump has nominated former District Judge Ryan Patrick, son of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R), to be the next U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Texas. Trump also nominated Grayson Co. District Attorney Joseph Brown to be the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas.
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