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Archive for August 19th, 2019

Filing Deadline Day

We are 79-46 after a lousy roadie that included losing 5 in a row. Where were we sitting after 125 games in 1998, 2017 and 2018?

Commentary put this out last week:

In a Chron article today, the Sen. John Cornyn Campaign called U.S. Senate Dem candidate Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez a “true progressive.” I’ll take that. I would shout out a name and label at Cornyn, but he probably couldn’t hear because he has is head up so far up Donald Trump’s, err well you get the picture.

When Sen. Cornyn’s head comes out for air, who wants to tell him about the latest on NASA. You know you are a Donald Trump tool, when you don’t even know you are being used as a Trump tool. What a tool.

Today is the filing deadline day for H-Town City races, HISD Trustee races, and HCC Trustee races.

The four incumbent HISD Trustees who are up for reelection have not filed for reelection as of this past weekend. One of the four, Trustee Rhonda Skillern-Jones is running for HCC District II Trustee. The other three Trustees are Diana Davila, Jolanda Jones and Sergio Lira.

Just a reminder. In 1979, 40 years ago, the election was the first time H-Town had single member districts for H-Town City Council. I was there. Most of you weren’t. I managed a winning campaign for an H-Town City Council single member district race. You didn’t.

Former H-Town City Council Member and Harris County Treasurer Orlando Sanchez will be running for City Controller.

Wow! State Rep. Jessica Farrar is resigning effective September 30 of this year. She is my state representative here in District 148. She had a great career and more importantly, she did it her way. I was one of her campaign consultants when she first got elected in 1994.

She is a champion for women, the poor, Latinos, African Americans, the LGBTQ community, Labor, Teachers, Children, among others. She was one of the few legislators to vote against that stupid constitutional amendment that banned same sex marriages back in the 2000s.

She has what it takes. One session she was one of three or so Democratic Party House members to vote against GOP Tom Craddick’s election for Texas House Speaker and suffered the consequences like being a member from an urban center and getting put on the Agriculture Committee which made all the farmers in her district happy.

Out of 150 House Members, she was 7th in seniority.

Thanks a million, Jessica!

It looks like we will have a special election to fill the position this November. This will be the third special election within the past year of a Harris County legislative district held by a Latina. Think about that.

Or look at it this way. The Latino/Latina community in Harris County will have lost 35 years of legislative experience in the Texas House of Representatives this past year.

A special election in Texas House District 148 will be worth watching. Commentary has no idea who will be in the field or if I will even be involved. Remember, Dems, GOPers, and Independents will be voting in the constitutional amendments and local elections. If there are multiple candidates and a runoff is an outcome, the filing for the 2020 primary elections will open at around the November 5 election date and end right before the runoff. You could have two Dem candidates in a close race in November headed to a runoff, and both would file in the Democratic Party Primary a few days before the runoff. One would win in December and then they would face each other three months later in a primary consisting of only Dem voters. That’s too much to process.

Show me the #TXHD148SpecialElection candidates!

Of course, Commentary and Jaime Mercado have the most and best experience in winning local special elections involving Dems over the past year. Just saying!

Jacob Carpenter, who covers HISD for the Chron, put out a must-read story yesterday on the next steps for TEA including the strong possibility of having the HISD Board of Trustees step aside and putting in a conservator and board of managers to run HISD. Here is part of Carpenter’s story:

State-appointed board members would assume all the power currently held by the district’s elected trustees. Those responsibilities include hiring and firing the superintendent, approving the HISD’s budget and setting district policies.

State law dictates that (TEA Commissioner Mike) Morath would choose HISD’s superintendent from the outset of the board’s appointment, though the new managers could later tap their own leader for the district. Morath could permanently retain HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan, who has held the position since March 2018, but he has not commented publicly about her chances.

Here is the entire story:
https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Questions-swirls-as-fate-of-HISD-board-remains-14340672.php.

You really need to read the story. If a paywall blocks you, go steal a hard copy at Starbucks or at a library.

The Chron E-Board also weighed in yesterday and here is their online headline:

State intervention best option for Houston ISD. Now tell us the plan.

Here is how the E-Board take ends:

At this point, the best option available under the law is a state-appointed board of managers. In the very likely event that Morath, the TEA commissioner, takes that route, he should do so with the utmost consideration of all that’s at stake. That includes students’ futures, of course, but also the public’s trust, and the elements of the current HISD ecosystem that are actually working — and there are many.

Intervention must be undertaken with respect and careful attention to community concerns. New board members must reflect the district’s diversity and its values. They must understand the communities they serve as well as grasp the importance of inclusion and best practices in their governance. The panel should include experienced educators, as well as candidates with financial expertise and civic involvement. There must be a clear plan for implementation, for measuring success — and a defined exit strategy.

Parents, educators, students and taxpayers, therefore, must step up to ask hard questions and demand that the state provide honest answers. How will members be chosen? What criteria will be used to ensure that state appointees prioritize the needs of HISD students? Will there be additional financial resources to help schools improve? Will a strong ethics policy be in place and enforced?

Above all, Morath and TEA must promise — and provide — transparency. Parents need to be confident that their children’s welfare is at the center of every decision, every discussion. Houston is done accepting any less.

Here is the entire take: https://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/State-intervention-best-option-for-Houston-ISD-14339472.php.

Here is the deal. If the Trustees are moved aside, some folks and communities are going to be pretty p_ssed off. Some more than others. Do the transition or takeover in a way, if at all possible, that shows no favoritism with the exception of favoritism to the students. Pretty please!

In 2018 after 125 games, we were 75-50, in 2017, 76-49, and in 1998, 76-49 of course.

We are three and a half behind the Yankees for the best record in the AL and MLB. We start a 10 game homie tonight that includes the Tigers, Angels, Rays and netting in front of my seats.

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