Archive for October 16th, 2014

As of yesterday (Oct. 15) here in Harris County, 85,095 mail ballot applications have been submitted. 38,086 of the applications have been generated by the Democratic Party or Democratic candidate campaigns and 36,359 by the GOP and GOP candidate campaigns.

Here is the number to look for next Monday evening after the County releases the first day results of the Daily Record of Early Voting – 40,566. That’s how many mail ballots were in the books after the first day of Early Voting in Person in 2012. Stay tuned!

KC swept their way to the World Serious yesterday. KC played in their first Serious in 1980 and lost to Philly in six. Name the 1980 World Serious MVP?

Talk about stepping in it and national blowback. Here is what the Chron E-Board is saying this morning about the Amen Subpoenas:

Just when you thought your political leaders couldn’t be more tone deaf than gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis with her now infamous wheelchair ad, along comes Mayor Annise Parker and her city attorney, David Feldman. It surfaced Tuesday that Feldman, represented by one of Houston’s highest-priced law firms, Susman Godfrey L.L.P., had dropped an Orwellian subpoena on a group of local ministers. He was demanding they hand over sermons and any other communications with congregants regarding Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance, the mayor, homosexuality and gender identity.

Wednesday, Feldman narrowed the subpoena to communications regarding the petition process. But the damage was already done.

The pastors are tied to a group that has sued the city to force a referendum to repeal the ordinance that was passed earlier this year by City Council.

The ordinance, in short, banned discrimination. Many considered it a solution in search of a problem. This page vociferously supported the equal rights ordinance, and that remains true today. We also believe that procedures for citizens who want to override the will of council should be followed scrupulously. That’s the rub here. Feldman says the plaintiffs in the case did not properly collect the requisite number of signatures. The pastors respond that they have a legitimate challenge to the city’s disqualification and insist there should be a vote.

Maybe so, maybe not.

Regardless, the legal questions can be sorted out without heavy-handed tactics that polarize the community. Feldman’s actions look like intimidation. They also raise questions about the city’s support for freedom of speech from the pulpit and for those with whom the mayor disagrees. We certainly understand that lobbying for a particular candidate can get a church or minister into trouble with the IRS, but even it recognizes that issue advocacy is another animal entirely.

This is a lawsuit about whether signatures are valid. We’re confident that a judge will quash this subpoena faster than you can say the Lord’s Prayer. But before it gets to that point, Parker ought to haul Feldman into her office and tell him to pull the subpoenas down.

Like I said yesterday, City Hall just gave the other side some ammo and some national press run. This was totally unnecessary. So was the following tweet sent out yesterday by the Mayor:

Annise Parker ‏@AnniseParker 5m5 minutes ago
One media outlet that got it right.-A. http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2014/10/houston-not-going-after-conservative-pastors.html

So every other media outlet got it wrong? Give it a rest, please!

Hall of Fame great Mike Schmidt of Philly of course won the 1980 World Serious MVP.

KC is 8-0 in the 2014 MLB Playoffs.

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