Texas Progressive Alliance Texan of the Year: Annise Parker

0 Flares Filament.io 0 Flares ×

'ImageThe Texas Progressive Alliance announced on Wednesday, December 30th that Houston Mayor-Elect Annise Parker is its “Texan of the Year” for 2009.

“Annise Parker's win is a testament to the power of grassroots campaigning,” said Texas Progressive Alliance Chair Vince Leibowitz. “Key Houston progressive bloggers endorsed Parker and contributed to her win, with hard hitting stories contrasting her strengths with her opponent's weaknesses,” he continued.

Annise Parker is the Alliance's fifth recipient of its “Texan of the Year Award.” Parker joins former State Representative Carter Casteel of New Braunfels, who won the award in 2005; Carolyn Boyle of Texas Parent PAC in 2006; State Representatives Garnet Coleman, Jim Dunnam, and Pete Gallego who shared the honor in 2007; and the Harris County Democratic Party's Coordinated Campaign in 2008.

With the election of Annise Parker as mayor of Houston, the fourth largest city in the United States signaled that they pay more attention to qualifications than to sexual orientation.  This news reverberated around the globe, and brought positive attention to Texas. National Democratic groups took note of a more progressive Houston than they assumed, and the talk and speculation turned to the possibilities of Texas turning blue sooner rather than later.

The Parker win was no accident. She put together a talented campaign team that ran on the strength of the grassroots, rather than City Hall insiders. Key Houston area progressive bloggers aligned themselves with Parker, and were embraced by the campaign. Blogs became an effective messaging strategy, emphasizing Parker's qualifications, and her opponent's weaknesses.

In the runoff, several third parties, including one longtime right wing operative who endorsed Parker's opponent, launched a series of homophobic attacks against her, but they failed to do her any serious damage because voters recognized her distinguished service as a member of Council and City Controller, and valued her experience and financial acumen. Voters knew who she was and what she was about because she had always been open and honest about it, and that was more important than anything some agitator could say.

For her historic victory, for making the rest of the world re-evaluate its opinion of Texas, and for running a truly modern grassroots campaign, the Texas Progressive Alliance is proud to name Houston's Mayor-Elect Annise Parker its Texan of the Year for 2009.

The Texan of the Year Award is voted on annually by the members of the Texas Progressive Alliance, the largest state-level organization of bloggers, blogs, and netroots activists in the United States.

Also earning recognition from the Alliance were Ramey Ko, Hank Gilbert, Calvin Tillman, Texas Watchdog, and State Representative Elliott Naishtat, who were each recognized as “Gold Star Texans” for 2009.  


About Author

Burnt Orange Report

Burnt Orange Report, or BOR for short, is Texas' largest political blog, written from a progressive/liberal/Democratic standpoint.


  1. Well, sort of…
    She won in a run-off. So while the grassroots was there it wasn't enough to win except in a run-off. She picked up voters from Peter Brown's camp and from Roy Morales' camp. And a lot of Republicans didn't vote. In all three cases, there is a question of racism.  Which is probably valid.

    Quite a few astrologers have wondered about her chart, by the way, and Kathy Hubbard finally gave the birth time to someone and she has an interesting chart – while she says she's not interested in higher office, higher office may be interested in her. Time will tell.


      • On crack accoding to some…
        No one is disputing her grassroots base which was vital given the lack of support in the beginning from the “mainstream” which she herself has talked about. Now that was homophobia. Which she hasn't really talked about. But making it sound like a landslide election, which quite  a few are, is a stretch.  Not everyone who voted for her the second time voted for her the first time.  So you have to ask why. Was it reaction to homophobia or racism? Either way, really, it wasn't entirely about her. She also didn't motivate massive numbers of voters to turn out. Any more than Gene Locke did. Or any of them did in November. Although some would say Roy Morales did. He got 20% of the vote. All Republican. That amazed some. And scared some.

        In all likelihood it was the Peter Brown bloc of voters that gave her the election. They are basically the “chi-chi” social crowd. The point is they didn't vote for her the first time. Maybe they just preferred one of their own.  Or maybe they didn't really prefer a lesbian or an African-American. Who's to say? They never will.

        There is both homophobia and racism in Houston. And among Democrats in Houston.  Reality.  

        The media of course played up the “qualifications versus sexual orientation” and then immediately turned her into “Lesbian of the Year.”  It probably should have been “Tootsie Returns to City Hall” and focused on her being a woman with a brain like Kathy Whitmire in a town run by businessmen. But the media is into schadenfruede and having put her on the pedestal will now strive to knock her off the pedestal.

        As for her chart, some believe in astrology and some don't.

        She does have an interesting chart. It would indicate she's destined to bigger and better things. Time will tell.  

Leave a Reply

2015 © Skytop Publishing All Rights Reserved. Do not republish without express written permission.

Site designed and developed by well + done DESIGN

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Filament.io 0 Flares ×