Tuesday, January 06, 2009

(insert The Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again" catch phrase here)

It's been a little overused in blog headlines of late. So anyway, I suppose I can believe now:

Joe Straus, a legislator from San Antonio with just one full legislative session behind him, all but assured his election as the next speaker of the House on Monday, picking up at least 12 more pledges from House members and losing his only remaining opponent.

Rep. John Smithee, R-Amarillo, dropped out of the race Monday afternoon. Smithee was endorsed by Speaker Tom Craddick on Sunday after Craddick had given up the fight for a fourth term as the House's leader.

Straus, 49, said more than 100 House members were now committed to vote for him when the session convenes Jan. 13. The minimum number required for election as speaker is 76. ...

Straus stands to become only the second urban House speaker in 70 years and the first since Gib Lewis of Fort Worth won the powerful office in 1983. Only one other San Antonio member has been elected House speaker: Chester Terrell in 1913. The last Houston House speaker was R. Emmett Morse in 1939.

Vince thinks Straus is bad news for Democratic prospects of taking back the House, especially in 2010 when redistricting will be on the slate. Philip, not so much. Guess we'll have to wait and see.

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