Early Voting: Monday is the beginning of the early voting period for the May 6 uniform election in most jurisdictions holding those elections.

CD21: The first of five planned Democratic candidate forums has been set for May 1 in San Marcos. At least eight candidates will participate, including three for which we had not yet been aware of any campaign activity:

  • Ryan Allen, Burnet emergency physician
  • Chad Kissinger, Austin tech entrepreneur; and
  • Mary Wilson, Austin pastor.

The other participating candidates are former Congressional staffer Derrick Crowe, tech entrepreneur Joseph Kopser, affordable housing activist Elliott McFadden, musician Rixi Melton and attorney Chris Perri. A Democratic group called Race to Replace is organizing the series of forums.

At least 10 individuals are actively pursuing a challenge of U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-San Antonio) as Democrats.

CD30: The Dallas Morning News’s Gromer Jeffers Jr. reported that “people close to” Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Dallas) expect she will seek re-election. Earlier this week, we noted that Johnson raised just $1K during the first three months of 2017 and has $54K on hand, adding to speculation that she might retire. A pair of fundraisers have been scheduled in Washington for next month.

Meanwhile, former Rep. Barbara Mallory Caraway (D-Dallas) told Jeffers that she will run for the seat for a fourth consecutive time “whether she’s in or out.” Caraway received 18%, 30% and 24% in the 2012, 2014 and 2016 Democratic primaries, respectively.

CD36: Former Taylor Lake Village Mayor Jon Powell filed paperwork establishing a campaign committee for a potential challenge to U.S. Rep. Brian Babin (R-Woodville).

Fort Worth: The Fort Worth Star-Telegram endorsed incumbent council member Zim Zimmerman (D3) and open-seat candidate Carlos Flores (D2).

Pasadena: The Houston Chronicle endorsed council member Pat Van Houte to succeed Mayor Johnny Isbell, who is term-limited.

San Antonio: The San Antonio Express-News endorsed open-seat candidates Marco Barros (D9) and Ezra Johnson (D10) for city council.