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Money Loser

The GOP Texas House Speaker said yesterday that he would be willing to sit with business leaders and go over the voter suppression bill line by line.  He doesn’t have to do that.  He just needs to read the Perryman Group’s analysis of the bill’s financial impact.  It is a money loser. Here is from Forbes.com: 

The Texas economy could take a massive hit if the state enacts new voting restrictions—potentially costing the state’s economy tens of billions of dollars and tens of thousands of jobs—according to a study from the Texas-based economic research firm the Perryman Group, as the Texas legislature Thursday moved one step closer to making the proposals.

The potential loss of conventions, major sporting events and tourism could cost the state $16.7 billion in annual gross product by 2025, and nearly 150,000 jobs, according to the study.

Internal factors, like decreased business activity and lower wages in the state, could lead to the loss of $14.7 billion in household purchasing power by 2025, according to the Perryman Group.

Retail trade would take the biggest hit, according to the study, losing more than 50,000 jobs from drops in tourism and economic development alone.

Not only is the bill a vote killer.  It’s a jobs killer.

The only folks who like the bill are racists voter suppressors.  They are the minority on this.  Don’t they get it?

On a related note.  More folks are voting by mail in the May 1 Uniform Elections thanks to the vote by mail applications that were sent out by the Harris County Elections Administrator. If it were up to the racists voter suppressors, these folks in Baytown, West U and elsewhere would not be voting. Think about that.

I watched the game last night.  I saw a lot of folks not wearing masks.  They were not eating or drinking either.  The Astros didn’t appear to be enforcing their mask rule.  I have no idea who in the bunch was fully vaccinated.  I have no idea who got their first dose or who is carrying the variant.  It really didn’t look like an environment that I would go into.  I will continue to watch from home.

It is nice that we are 6-1 and off to a great start.  We have only played two teams though. It is still nice. It is also early.

The Astros have Sunday off. Someone needs to explain to Commentary why we don’t play on Sunday. That’s a first. I think.

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Home Opener

Gov. Greg Abbott went to San Antonio yesterday to call out the treatment of migrant kids at a facility that is being run by the federal government.  Abbott says he is having the Texas Rangers and DPS investigate.

Let that sink in for a moment. 

He’s a goddamn Governor.  He can pick up the phone and call Vice President Kamala Harris, who has been tasked with dealing with this issue, and get to the bottom of this.  There really are ways to handle problems if you go about it properly.

Grow up and quit acting like a punkarse immature politico. Leadership isn’t part of his DNA.

He’s an embarrassment. This is about misdirection.  He wants us to forget about his handling of the pandemic, the Big Freeze, the rental assistance program and STAAR testing.

What is the point in asking this clown where he was when they were snatching babies from moms on the border in 2018 and 2019.

Here is from today’s Chron:

Fans going to Minute Maid Park for the Astros’ home opener Thursday night can expect the following policies, which will remain in force for the near future:

No bags will be allowed in the venue, with the exception of manufacturer designed diaper bags, when accompanied by an infant or small child; medical bags; gallon bags used for bringing food or water into the building; and single compartment clutches, wristlets, and hip/fanny packs that do not exceed nine inches by five inches.

Masks are required at all times except when one is eating or drinking. Eating and drinking are permitted only at ticketed seats.

Fans may enter the ballpark through all standard entrances, which will open two hours before game time. All fans will be subject to a verbal health screening upon arrival.

Concessions will be cashless at all points of sale. At sections 108, 218 and 315, there will be reverse ATMs that can change cash into an Astros themed debit card.

Commentary won’t be at the Astros home opener today. I am really not sad about it.  The pandemic turned our world upside down and changed things up quite a bit.  I read where they are going to sell 50% of the tickets and call it capacity.  Whatever.  I don’t want to pluck down big bucks to avoid crowds on the concourse, restrooms and Saint Arnold kiosk.

I also don’t want to be sitting in my seats with a mask on and having to lift it up every time I sip on my $14 Amber or Art Car.

There is just too much we don’t know about COVID-19 and the variants. I don’t feel like taking a risk.

To those that are going, play it safe and be careful.

Play ball, I guess.

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Commentary watched Tony Buzbee’s press availability yesterday on Deshaun Watson.  It was very difficult to watch and very disturbing.  If Watson doesn’t have a good defense, I don’t see how he takes another snap in the NFL.

GOPers who are supporting the racist voter suppression legislative proposals are not happy with the massive pushback they are getting from the public and business leaders.  They are on the wrong side of history and they know it.

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell warned America’s CEOs to stay out of politics, but their financial contributions were still welcome.  That’s hilarious.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is all riled up over the massive opposition to SB 7, the racist voter suppression bill.  Keep up the opposition and recruit more folks to oppose this racist voter suppression sh_t.  Make it hard for Patrick and other MFers like McConnell to support this crap.  They are cracking for sure.

Commentary got this on my take on the major partisan redistricting of Texas’ Appellate Courts:

RE: Kristen LaFreniere comment. As drafted, SB 11 provides the “surgical” fix of a few very minor anomalies in the appellate system.
https://capitol.texas.gov/tlodocs/87R/billtext/html/SB00011I.htm

But it’s being used as a Trojan horse for a GOP takeover of most of the appellate system through the committee substitute version. Sen. Huffman would have the media and the public believe that it’s not a redistricting bill, but the House counterpart bills (HB 339 HB 2613 were actually referred to redistricting. See here:
https://capitol.texas.gov/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=87R&Bill=HB2613.


There would be no doubt if the text of the much more far-reaching substitute bill were actually shown on the Lege’s website.

As for the purported justification for the sweeping changes, the appellate docket imbalance/equalization argument is a sham. Only about 5% of all cases are transferred and this is done as needed. That’s because the need for transfers varies over time among the appellate courts, The direction and size of adjustment flows is not predictable because the underlying dynamics of appellate activity is not predictable, especially not with the disruptions last year due to COVID, which crated a severe backlog in the trial courts. If the Austin Court of Appeals is chronically over-burdened because it gets more government entity/admin law appeals, it could simply be enlarged in size, or more visiting justices could be used.

Tags tweeted this after the game yesterday in which Carlos Correa hit a two run dinger in the top of the ninth to lead the Astros to a 4-2 win over the Angels:

Carlos Correa: “I like hitting late in the game when the game is on the line. That’s when I feel sexy.”

Sexy, Carlos.

46 years-ago today, the Astros rainbow jersey made its debut against The ATL. Now you know.

From ESPN.com:

The rainbow uniform was introduced in 1975. It was a radical design for its time — nothing remotely like it had ever appeared on a baseball diamond. It was also the perfect embodiment of MLB’s Technicolor era, as a variety of factors (new fabrics, new tailoring concepts, the rise of color television, the loosening of longstanding cultural dress codes) helped to reshape the idea of what a baseball uniform could be.

The Astros wore the rainbows through 1986. More than three decades later, the rainbow design is now entrenched as part of MLB’s visual bedrock (the Astros have worn it as a throwback at least nine times since 1999). While time may have made this uniform more familiar, it hasn’t softened its audacity. It’s still a radical design, and it’s still unlike anything ever seen on a big league diamond. It’s simultaneously dated and timeless. It is, essentially, a category unto itself.

Moreover, while the rainbow uni has become a fan favorite over the years, it has lots of nuances and details that many fans are unaware of. With that in mind, here are 10 things you might not know about one of baseball’s most notable uniforms.

1. The rainbow uni was designed by an ad agency. If you’ve ever looked at the rainbow uni and wondered who dreamed it up, the answer is the advertising firm McCann Erickson, which was hired by the Astros to redesign the team’s look for the 1975 season. It would be fascinating to see the company’s original files and to know the identities of the people who worked on the project, right? The good news in that regard is that McCann Erickson still exists (it’s now known simply as McCann). The bad news is that a company spokesman said the firm no longer has any original sketches or other archival paperwork. The Astros haven’t saved any original documents, either. Sigh.

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Reckless Rangers

Commentary’s Dad went to Baylor.  I wasn’t with him last night.  I was with him Saturday when the Bears played the Coogs.  My 97-year-old Dad talked smack for two hours watching the game on Saturday.  He had me laughing and I have to say that never gets old.

The USA should have done a lot better against the pandemic this past year.  We have been let down by a number of GOP elected officials.  Don’t get me wrong. There were some GOP elected officials who were outstanding.  There were far too many who fumbled and were cowards like Gov. Greg Abbott.

Now check this from the Daily Beast:

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte, who rescinded the state’s mask mandate weeks after taking office, has tested positive for COVID-19. The 59-year-old Republican got the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine last Thursday, but since full immunity doesn’t kick in until after the second dose, he would have still been vulnerable to infection. The Billings Gazette reports that he developed symptoms on Sunday after attending Easter services, tested positive on Monday, and will now quarantine for 10 days. It’s not clear how he contracted the virus or if he has infected others, but six members of the state legislature have also tested positive since January.

That is not surprising.

The Texas Rangers were reckless yesterday.  “Today” led off their program this morning with the Ranger game and fans packed together, many without masks. I read a story where some Ranger fan said they were taking a “calculated risk” by attending the super spreader home opener.  It was more like a dangerous guess.  Fuc_ing morons.

The GOP wants to boycott MLB and Coca Cola. Commentary is Ok with Gov. Greg Abbott boycotting MLB.  If we win the World Series, his sorry arse won’t be around for any of the playoff games, and he won’t ride in the Downtown parade. 

Donald Trump wants a Coke boycott, and he took a photo with a Coke not fully concealed.

I can’t remember the last food or drink product I boycotted.  Maybe table grapes back in the 70s on behalf of farmworkers.

It looks like Mike Collier will be running for Lt. Governor again.  We have Joe Jaworski running for AG.  Those fellas are Ok.  We need a diverse ticket that looks like the Texas Democratic Party.  Commentary is talking about folks of color, women and from the LGBTQ community.

I just saw on “Today” that Peeps – you know, the candy – will be made into a movie.

I got this from the team yesterday:

We wanted to inform you of a brand new parking opportunity at Minute Maid Park. Located on the corner of Preston & Crawford St. across from the Center Field Gate, this small but convenient lot is the only lot on the west side of the stadium.

Full season access to parking spaces in Lot E is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

Now you know.

We lost our first game last night.  We end the roadie with a 3 pm start today in Anaheim.

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Lazy GOPers

When did revamping Texas’ appellate courts become a priority?

Answer: When Democrats started winning again.

Check this from the Chron:

The first redistricting battle of the 2021 legislative session is here — but it’s not about state or congressional districts.

Sen. Joan Huffman, a former Harris County district court judge, is proposing an overhaul of the Texas appellate court district boundaries in an effort, she says, to help balance the workload. Under the current setup, which hasn’t been restructured in decades, the state frequently has to transfer cases from high-volume courts to lower-volume courts.

“Texans routinely explain that these transfers lead to confusion, frustration and increased cost,” said Huffman, a Houston Republican.

Senate Bill 11, which was voted out of committee on a 3-2 party line vote Thursday, would cut the number of appellate districts in half to seven.

But Democrats have described the proposal as a power grab after a blue wave helped them win majorities on half of the 14 appellate courts in 2018 and greatly increased diversity on the bench. The party, along with appellate court attorneys and judges, also worry that the new districts would reduce the voting power of minorities.

And this:

Second District Court of Appeals Chief Justice Bonnie Sudderth, a Republican who is chair of the Texas Council of Chiefs, said the bill would cause a disruption “at every level of our operations.”

And this:

Kristen LaFreniere, an appellate lawyer from Lubbock, said it was “nonsensical” to seek increased efficiency by reducing the number of courts. She said she’d rather see a more surgical fix to the overlapping areas, as proposed in other bills.

“It’s kind of hard to look at this and say that’s not partisan,” LaFreniere said, a self-described conservative Republican from West Texas. “It does seem to be more of a response to the shift left on some of the courts that we’ve seen. And that concerns me, Republican or otherwise, to see our courts being used in a political way.”

Here is the entire Chron article: Houston lawmaker’s proposal to slash number of appellate courts threatens diversity, critics say (houstonchronicle.com).

Even fellow GOPers think this is flawed. Rather than compete for the voters on ideas, some lazy GOPers like Sen. Huffman, would rather change the rules.  Pitiful.

This is what GOP Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley says about voter suppression bill SB 7:

It’s ridiculous. You’re going to have to reduce the number of machines at the main locations.  People will have to stand in line longer.  If it’s not voter suppression, it’s at least voter inconvenience.

We’re in the middle of a pandemic. We’ve had problems with our electric grid. And they’re screwing around with how many machines we can have in a polling place?

Pure and simple laziness that is turning into racism.

We aren’t taking sh_t anymore.  We are tired of some in the GOP suppressing our vote in broad daylight.  MLB did the right thing and snatched the MLB All Star Game and the MLB Draft away from Georgia.  Take that MFers. 

GOP leaders in the Texas Legislature need to decide if they want to put Texas in the same position. No more MLB All Star Games, Super Bowls, Final Fours, NBA All Star Game, just to name a few.  You are just not picking on Latino and African American voters.  You are picking a fight with democracy and folks have had it.

My bracket had Baylor winning it all.

Babe Ruth of the Yankees set the modern MLB record for runs scored in a season in 1921, scoring 177 times.  Now you know.

I hope you stayed up late Friday night and got to see Jose Altuve score on a sacrifice fly to second base.  That was amazing.  That was hustle.  That was also an RBI for Kyle Tucker.

The team certainly opened the season firing away on all fronts. They are averaging 8.75 runs per game. 4-0 baby!

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Freeze Body Count

Former GOP U.S. House Speaker John Boehner has a book and here is what he said about Cancun Cruz:

“By 2013 the chaos caucus in the House had built up their own power base thanks to fawning right-wing media and outrage-driven fundraising cash. And now they had a new head lunatic leading the way, who wasn’t even a House member. There is nothing more dangerous than a reckless a__hole who thinks he is smarter than everyone else. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Senator Ted Cruz.”

You can’t argue that.  Just like you can’t argue @AOC owning Cancun Cruz’s arse on social media.  Here is what Cancun Cruz tweeted yesterday:

“@AOC explains the real Dem position: abolish ICE. Full open borders. Which would make the #BidenBorderCrisis even worse. She says nothing else works. Really? Last year, we had the lowest illegal immigration IN 45 YEARS. This year, we have the highest in 20 years.”

Here is the response from @AOC:

“Ted, this is pretty rich coming from someone who fled their own home (and responsibilities) during an environmental crisis to cross the border and seek refuge in Mexico. Also you funded cages, expanded cages, and yet you’re complaining about cages. You have no policy, just puff.”

Plus, this:

“Maybe Mexico shouldn’t let YOU in the next time you try to run away from your job to sip umbrella drinks in Cancún.”

Cancun Cruz deserves all the ridicule out there.

The State of Texas can’t protect us from a pandemic.  The state can’t protect us from the Big Freeze.  The state can’t even figure out how many folks the Big Freeze killed.  Check this from the Chron:

The deaths of nearly 200 people are linked to February’s cold snap and blackouts, a Houston Chronicle analysis reveals, making the natural disaster one of the worst in Texas this past century.

The tally, which is nearly double the state’s official count, comes from an investigation of reports from medical examiners, justices of the peace and Department of State Health Services, as well as lawsuits and news stories.

The state count, which is preliminary, has yet to incorporate some deaths already flagged by medical examiners as storm-related.

The 194 deaths identified by the Chronicle so far include at least 100 cases of hypothermia that killed people in their homes or while exposed to the elements, at least 16 carbon monoxide poisonings of residents who used dangerous methods for heat and at least 22 Texans who died when medical devices failed without power or who were unable to seek live-saving care because of the weather.

Sixteen deaths were from other causes, such as fires or vehicle wrecks, while the remaining 40 were attributed by authorities to the storm without listing a specific cause.

“This is almost double the death toll from Hurricane Harvey,” said State Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas.

Here is the entire Chron article: Analysis reveals nearly 200 died in Texas cold storm and blackout (houstonchronicle.com).

Gov. Greg Abbott’s ineptness on full display again.

It looks like this will be Carlos Correa’s last season as an Astro.  Here is what Correa said yesterday:

“We didn’t get close at all. There were not really any negotiations.”

“They made it very clear to me. They said, ‘We don’t believe in long contracts. We don’t believe in big contracts. Once I hit free agency, I’m going to look for a big, long contract. They made it very clear that they did not believe in that.”

Here is the Chron article on Correa:  Carlos Correa sounds headed for free agency as contract talks with Astros hit stalemate (houstonchronicle.com).

Oh, well.  I bet when I return to The Yard, whenever, the price of a Saint Arnold will be a buck higher. 

We won the opener last night 8-1.  They looked sharp.

Have a Good Friday and a Happy Easter Sunday.

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VBM Applications

This isn’t an April Fools’ tale.

Commentary is involved with the City of Pasadena municipal elections that are being held on May 1 with Early Voting starting on April 19.  There has been a Vote by Mail program in Pasadena.  As of this morning, political jurisdictions in Harris County holding May 1 elections have submitted 727 mail ballots to the Harris County Elections Administrator.  667 of the 727 are from Pasadena.

West University Place has May 1 elections and only 10 West U voters have voted by mail.

Goose Creek CISD in the Baytown area is having trustee elections and only 8 voters have voted by mail.  South Houston, which is right next to Pasadena, is having municipal election – 4 voters have voted by mail.

We have obviously had the resources in Pasadena to conduct a Vote by Mail (VBM) program.  Campaigns in West U, Goose Creek and South Houston obviously have not.

My Dad, who votes in the Goose Creek CISD, got a VBM application a couple of days ago from the Harris County Elections Administrator.  My Dad had already submitted his 2021 VBM application, received his ballot and is one of the 8 in Goose Creek who have voted.

The VBM applications were sent to every voter 65 and older in Harris County political jurisdictions holding elections on May 1.  The application also includes a good explanation if you can vote by mail with COVID-19 still out there.

I think I you know where I am going with this.  A lot of voters 65 and older are now used to voting by mail.  Most get a mail ballot application from a political candidate’s campaign that has their voting info included.  All this is required is a signature and stamp.  That is what is happening in Pasadena.

I help fill out my Dad’s application a few weeks ago and I mailed it for him.

Thanks to the Harris County Elections Administrator, thousands of 65 and older voters who voted five months ago in the November elections, will get an opportunity to vote in their May 1 election.

Now think about this.  Very few 65 and older voters take the time to fill out their own VBM application.  They rely on political campaigns.  That is what is happening in Pasadena but not elsewhere.  Last year, Harris County started sending out VBM applications to 65 and older voters.  They are doing it again this week.

The GOP controlled Texas state Senate passed SB 7 last night that would prevent Harris County from doing what they just did this week.  How gross is that?

I suspect more voters in West U, Goose Creek, South Houston and other jurisdictions will submit their VBM applications and voter participation will increase, thanks to the Harris County Elections Administrator.

Now why would anyone want to do away with this? Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Tags tweeted this yesterday about what Skipper Dusty Baker said:

Baker on players getting vaccines: “I would hope they would have sense enough to get it on opposite of their throwing arms.”

That’s funny.

My Beatles wall calendar for April has a photo of the four from 1963. “The Wizard of Oz” calendar has a photo of the Scarecrow with “stuff a mattress with me. Ha!”

Opening Day is today, and I am wearing my Astros gear.

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Wilson

As you can tell, Commentary doesn’t have much to say on the Wednesday before Easter Sunday.

HISD is looking at changing the name of Woodrow Wilson Elementary located in Montrose. Wilson was a known racist.  I don’t have a problem with this, but please be consistent.  Down the street from Wilson is Lamar High and Lamar was an arsehole.  How about changing that name?  If you don’t believe me, check this out: The Problem With Mirabeau Lamar – Texas Monthly.  Oh, well.

Sounds like the First Pet, Major, is a badass dog.  Don’t fu_k with Major.

C. Gordon Liddy left us yesterday.  I didn’t even know he was still around.

Just for what it is worth, I have the Coogs and Baylor making the Final Four on my bracket.  I was way off on the other side of the bracket.

Opening Day is tomorrow and here are MLB’s Alyson Footer’s Power Rankings:

  1. Dodgers
  2. Padres
  3. Yankees
  4. The ATL
  5. White Sox
  6. Twins
  7. 7. Mets
    8. Rays
    9. Blue Jays
    10. San Luis
    11. Astros
    12. A’s
    13. Brewers
    14. Cubs
    15. Nationals
    16. Cleveland
    17. Angels
    18. Phillies
    19. Reds
    20. Red Sox
    21. Marlins
    22. Giants
    23. Mariners
    24. Royals
    25. Tigers
    26. D-backs
    27. Rangers
    28. Rockies
    29. Orioles
    30. Pirates

Get ready to play ball.

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Gov. Greg Abbott has been a most inept governor.  Don’t even try to argue with me on this.  He has bungled the response to the pandemic. He showed anemic leadership during the Big Freeze.  The ERCOT mess.  His Public Utility Commissioners are an embarrassment.  Why in the heck would we want him, or any future Texas governor involved in how the proposed Ike Dike is run and governed?

GOP State Sen. Larry Taylor has a bill that does that.  Here is from today’s Chron:

A bill has been introduced in the Texas Legislature to create a regional district that could levy taxes and issue bonds to build and maintain a proposed $26 billion storm surge barrier on the southeast Texas coast.

The measure, SB1160, is sponsored by state Sen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, with a companion bill in the state House filed by Rep. Dennis Paul, R-Houston. The legislation would establish the Gulf Coast Protection District, an entity composed of members from Harris, Galveston, Chambers, Jefferson and Orange counties.

The proposal marks the first time that lawmakers have outlined a clear local funding and management mechanism for the long-discussed coastal barrier, once known as the “Ike Dike,” the majority of which would be funded by the federal government. In addition to taxing authority, the local protection district could use eminent domain to seize property or land “for the exercise of the district’s functions,” according to the bill’s text.

And this:

The Gulf Coast Protection District would be governed by a board of 11 directors appointed by the governor in consultation with the respective commissioners courts from each county. Each of the five counties would have one representative except for Harris County, which, because of its larger population, would have two. The district would also include one representative each for the regional ports, the environmental sector. the regional industrial complex, and for all of the cities within the five counties.

Here is the entire Chron read:  How do you build and maintain $26 billion ‘Ike Dike’? Bonds, taxes, eminent domain, says senate bill (houstonchronicle.com).

The last thing folks in the H-Town area need is Abbott’s or any future Texas governor’s involvement.  The Ike Dike is too important to our area to have the governor’s office involved. I hope Sen. Taylor’s bill is scuttled.  Running the Ike Dike needs to stay local. 

Look what TxDOT is doing to H-Town on I-45. Keep the Ike Dike local.

The Harris County District Clerk is proposing to pay jurors more.  Here is from the Chron:

The rate of $6 for the first day and $40 for subsequent days, Harris County District Clerk Marilyn Burgess said, is a major reason why more than 70 percent of residents ignore jury summonses.

Burgess has asked Commissioners Court to boost juror pay to $50 for the first day and $80 for any after, plus free parking at the county garage at 1401 Congress.

And this:

Burgess said appearance rates for jurors have varied greatly by race and ethnicity. Currently, 55 percent of whites come when requested, compared to 29 percent for Latinos.

A survey the District Clerk’s Office conducted found that 82 percent of Latino respondents and 74 percent of African Americans said they would be more inclined to show up for service if first-day juror pay were increased.

Here is the entire Chron read on juror pay:  District Clerk Marilyn Burgess recommends tenfold increase in Harris County juror pay (houstonchronicle.com).

Who would be opposed to better juror pay?

Former Astro Jake Marisnick is 30 today.

Alex Bregman is 27 today.

Happy Birthday Bregman and Marisnick!

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Ridiculed

A few folks found out yesterday that Maya Rudolph’s mom is the late and great singer Minnie Riperton.  I remember I was floored years ago when I learned this.  I still have Minnie’s “Perfect Angel” album on vinyl.  She left us way too early at age 31 in 1979. Sad.

We lost longtime Chron columnist Leon Hale this past weekend.  I loved his columns.  I loved to read about his days growing up. The mule that would only talk to him.  His drives around the 610 Loop. His visits to small towns across Texas. He wrote in a way that you could actually picture what he was writing. I never met him.  I did see him one time at The Yard at the Saint Arnold area and he was drinking a cold one.  He was a treasure for sure.

I asked Charles Kuffner a couple or so weeks ago about Texas Senate District 6 and how it compared in presidential races the last couple of cycles.  This morning he certainly provided more than I asked for.  Cool.  Here are parts:

If we look at SD06, which is a heavily Latino district, you can see the increase in support for Trump from 2016 to 2020, which has been the story everyone has been talking about. I think it’s instructive to include the 2012 numbers, because the net change over the eight year period is basically zero from a percentage perspective – Obama carried SD06 by a 66-32 margin, while Biden carried it 66-33 – the vote gap increased by over 16K in the Dems’ favor. It’s true that Biden won SD06 by fewer votes than Hillary Clinton did, and that Trump closed the gap from 2016 by eight thousand votes, but the overall trend for this period is one that I find as a Democrat to be satisfactory. The overall direction is what I want, even if it’s not as fast as I’d like it to be. What happens next is the argument we’re all having, and there’s data to support either position. We’ll just have to see how it goes.

The flip side of that is what happened in SD07, Dan Patrick’s former district and one of the redder places in the state in 2012. Here, the trend is unmistakably in one direction. Mitt Romney’s SD07 was as Republican as SD06 was Democratic. Hillary Clinton shaved 41K off of the Dem deficit in 2016, and Joe Biden shrunk it by another 18K. In 2020, SD07 was only a ten-point GOP district. It would not be crazy to view it as a swing district, at least at the Presidential level, in 2024. I don’t know what the Republican redistricting plan is, but they’re not going to have a lot of spare capacity to borrow from in SD07. Just take a look at SD17 – which includes a lot of turf outside Harris County – to see why this make them a little nervous.

Finally, a few words about a couple of districts I don’t usually think about in these analyses, SD13 and SD15. The total number of votes in SD13 didn’t increase very much from 2012 to 2020 – indeed, it’s the one place I see where both Trump and Clinton got fewer votes than their counterparts in 2012 – and that is something I’d like to understand better. (For what it’s worth, Borris Miles got about 40K votes in Fort Bend in 2020, while Rodney Ellis got 32K in 2012. That’s a slightly higher growth rate than in Harris, but still kind of slow compared to other districts.) Trump 2020 snipped a couple of percentage points off Romney’s deficit, from down 68 to down 62, but that’s still a net 10K votes for Dems. As for SD15, it’s an example of a strong Democratic district that really stepped it up over the past eight years, performing in that way much like a lot of formerly dark red areas. Biden gained 55K net votes over Obama, as SD15 went from a 19 point Dem district to a 30 point Dem district. We’re going to need more like this around the state as we go forward.

Here is all of Off The Kuff: Precinct analysis: State Senate comparisons – Off the Kuff.

Thanks.

From the I did not know that department. I always thought that HEB was the national grocery store of Texas.  How can that be if they have never had stores in the Dallas – Fort Worth area?

Royko sent me this on my calling out racists in Georgia.

The Georgia election was stolen, and the victims have not finished the court challenges in a number of states.

One thing is certain, the Dominion voting machines are being scrutinized and removed in more of the states, where sanity still exists.

The other change will be to end the “cheat-by mail.”

The Dems are enabling this by trying to ram the federalization of state elections legislation through. There is a possibility the Quisling Justice Roberts will not vote with the Maoist faction of the Supreme Court, and end this lunacy.

That’s hilarious.  Three recounts in Georgia.  The election in Georgia was presided over by a GOP Secretary of State.  Racists can only win when they create obstacles to voting and don’t let folks vote. Oh yeah, Commentary is looking forward to the day when Dominion becomes a part owner of Fox News.

Probably the most ridiculed person on Twitter these days, and deservedly so, is Cancun Cruz.  The latest is his safari to the border with his dumbarse GOP senate colleagues.  Cancun Cruz never went down to check on the border when they were separating families and snatching babies from moms a couple of years ago. Cancun’s yapping these days is a joke.  He deserves all the ridicule that is piled on him. What a piece of you know what.

Opening Day is in three days and some of the players are dealing with COVID-19 protocols.  That’s why I won’t be at The Yard anytime soon.

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