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The Morning After

by: Phillip Martin

Wed Mar 03, 2010 at 10:26 AM CST

As everyone here on BOR has other jobs or is (understandably) taking a morning off from work after the primary, we're a little slower to get our post-election analysis up right away.

Here are the highlights of last night, in case you haven't seen them yet:

  • Bill White (D-Texas) vs. Rick Perry (R-Washington) is going to be a long battle.
  • Linda Chavez-Thompson won her primary outright, giving Democrats an exciting 1-2 punch atop our ticket.

  • Hank Gilbert and Hector Uribe round out our statewide winners from last night.

  • In State House races, three Democrat incumbents -- Dora Olivo, Tara Rios Ybarra, and Terri Hodge definitely lost. Final numbers show that former State Rep. Borris Miles defeated current (and former) State Rep. Al Edwards in the HD-146 primary by ony 11 votes. Expect a recount -- though Borris Miles is already declaring victory:

    "This victory is particularly important," says Borris Miles, State Representative-elect. "I am honored to have the opportunity to get back to work for the people of District 146.  We have much to accomplish.  I do want to thank Representative Edwards for his service to the community."
    "I'm excited to have Borris return to Austin. He is clearly the most qualified candidate and has a strong record as a legislator," says Mayor Annise Parker.  "During tough economic times, his business savvy should make a significant difference for the City of Houston and the state."
  • For Republicans, east Texas Republicans Tommy Merritt and Betty Brown lost their races -- Brown by only 100+ votes.

  • In perhaps the biggest news of the night, Republicans have lost their darling, Don McLeroy, on the State Board of Education.

  • On the Republican side, incumbent Railroad Commissioner Victor Carillo lost 60-40 to unknown (and small-money) candidate David Porter -- apparently just because Republican primary voters detest Spanish-surname candidates that much.

  • Locally in Austin, Amy Clark Meachum, John Lipscombe, Cliff Brown and Margaret Gomez all won their respective races. Mindy Montford and Karen Sage are heading to a runoff -- which means we will be headed to more detailed coverage of that race soon.
There's lot's else. Let's start a new comment thread below...

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The Morning After | 13 comments
Congratulations to Hank Gilbert (3.00 / 1)
I hope this means Kinky will retire from politics for good.

As for Carillo, when you play with fire you have a good chance of getting burned.  I say that plays well for our candidate Jeff Weems who now does not have to face an incumbent.

One more congratulation to Rebecca Bell-Metereau who won the SBOE Democratic nomination Place 5.  She will now face wing nut Ken Mercer who won re-election last night.  This could not be more clear come November.  Either we restore sanity to the SBOE or crazies like Mercer will continue to make kid's education in Texas about religious beliefs.

Really? (1.00 / 1)
"On the Republican side, incumbent Railroad Commissioner Victor Carillo lost 60-40 to unknown (and small-money) candidate David Porter -- apparently just because Republican primary voters detest Spanish-surname candidates that much."

I thought Republican's were the race-baiters, not Democrats.  This is an outrageous statement.  When your prism is race, everything that happens to a particular group is racism. This is the problem with "progressives" today.  Kind of like, "when you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail."

Well how would you explain Carillo's loss? (0.00 / 0)
Incumbents always have the advantage, and Carillo certainly had the money advantage.  Even Carillo knew his name would be a detriment to his re-election.

AAS 3/3/10
All the election drama was down ballot
Editorial Board

For election night suspense, all the action was down the ballot and well below most voters' radar.

The high-profile races didn't yield surprises, but there was a big upset in the Railroad Commission race in which an unknown, underfunded candidate who barely campaigned knocked off incumbent Victor Carrillo. Carrillo, a former Taylor County judge, lawyer and geologist, expressed a fear earlier this week that his Latino surname made him vulnerable, and his premonition proved right.

It was a premonition rooted in history. In 2001, Gov. Rick Perry named Xavier Rodriguez, now a federal judge, to the Texas Supreme Court. He was defeated in the 2002 GOP primary by little-known challenger Stephen Wayne Smith, who spent $9,500, compared to the more than $550,000 spent by Rodriguez. In that case, the name factor made GOP leaders nervous, but they acknowledged the power of the name factor.

David Porter pulled off the upset of Carrillo despite a minimal investment of time, money and expertise in the primary.

[ Parent ]
Calm the outrage (0.00 / 0)
Every analyst said the same thing, as did the folks at this morning's Texas Tribune breakfast. Foster spent something like only $30k against an incumbent that spent lots.

Now, a very great man once said that some people rob you with a fountain pen.

[ Parent ]
Yup (0.00 / 0)
Matthew Dowd, yes THAT Matthew Dowd, said the republican have a problem in their primary with hispanic surnames.

Just saying....

[ Parent ]
Mike Baselice (0.00 / 0)
Gov. Perry's pollster said the same thing.  So did Carrillo's campaign spokesperson.

Just because something is ugly doesn't mean it isn't true.  In Harris County Leo Vasquez learned the same lesson.

[ Parent ]
So did Carillo himself (0.00 / 0)
Texas Tribune 3/3/10
Carrillo: Hispanic Surname Caused Election Loss
Victor Carrillo, a Republican incumbent for who ran for reelection to Railroad Commission, believes he lost the primary to a relative unknown, David Porter, solely because of voter prejudice based on his Hispanic name.

"Early polling showed that the typical GOP primary voter has very little info about the position of Railroad Commissioner, what we do, or who my opponent or I were. Given the choice between "Porter" and "Carrillo" - unfortunately, the Hispanic-surname was a serious setback from which I could never recover although I did all in my power to overcome this built-in bias.  I saw it last time but was able to win because the "non-Carrillo" vote was spread among three Anglo GOP primary opponents instead of just one. Also, the political dynamics have changed some since 2004.

Many of you have begun to call and/or write to express your concern over the whole situation. You are correct to be concerned over the fact that the GOP (our party) still has these tendencies to not be able to elect or retain highly qualified candidates who WANT to continue serving the public as I do. It is indeed a shame. Nevertheless, I refuse to walk away in shame because I know that my team and I did just about all we could have done to ensure that the primary electorate knew of my qualifications, expertise, and experience. The rest was beyond my control. I also urge party leaders to not alienate the Hispanic/Latino voter in Texas, as we now comprise about 39% of the population and we remain the fastest-growing minority group in the nation."

I'd say Carillo was hurting pretty bad today.

[ Parent ]
YAY, Hank! (4.00 / 2)
It's going to be a great race for Ag Commish, and I'm excited to see such a strong Democratic ticket statewide.

I still wish we'd been able to field someone for Comptroller, though. Major missed opportunity for a seat on the Legislative Redistricting Board.

I'm beginning to wonder about the electorate of HD-146.  I guess when you have equally-matched dueling crazies, you take turns in the seat.  Can't y'all find a third person who can represent you without being so eccentric?

Why was Uribe's race so close? (0.00 / 0)
I don't understand that one at all.  What did Burton have going for him?  

I still think part of it is Afrrican American Support (0.00 / 0)
From Burton's website, the few groups that endorsed him included the Texas Coalition of Black Democrats, the Dallas Coalition of Black Democrats, and The Black El Paso Democrats.  

"Let us tenderly and kindly cherish therefore, the means of knowledge. Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write."  -  John Adams

[ Parent ]
Mark Thompson syndrome. (3.00 / 1)
"Strong ballot name", little if any attention paid to the race. And Hector didn't exactly get out there and set the state on fire.  

I think you're right (0.00 / 0)
Hector did not have sufficient name recognition statewide.  If only more people had seen his great work in "No Country for Old Men".  Or at least the great press release for his appearance.

Off the Kuff blog 1/11/2010
Hector Uribe may be my favorite candidate for this cycle
Anyone who can send out a press release like this is someone who can make the election season just a little more enjoyable.

In Stunning Move, Land Commissioner Candidate Hector Uribe Already up on Statewide TV

   (Austin) Democratic candidate for Texas Land Commissioner Hector Uribe announced today that he's already on TV state-wide, when the USA cable network aired "No Country For Old Men" on January 6, and twice during their programming yesterday. Uribe had a speaking role in the film, which garnered four Academy Awards...for other actors. Uribe, for his part, managed to become one of only a few actors in the film to achieve the vaulted status of not being violently murdered by the end of it.

There's more at the link in case you hadn't seen it before.

[ Parent ]
Medina (0.00 / 0)
So then maybe Debra Medina had some of that same issue with her surname.

The Morning After | 13 comments
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