Sunday, January 17, 2010

Friends running for office

-- Rachel Barrios-Van Os, for Bexar County Clerk. Yes, she's related to one of my very favorite dudes. One of her primary opponents is former Bexar County Democratic Party chair Carla Vela, who does not use e-mail ("it's too complicated") and noticed just last month that $200,000 was missing from the county party''s treasury.

... Vela struggled to explain how she only learned two days ago that Adams had been draining money from the party's primary account for 13 months.

That's despite County Auditor Tommy Tompkins' public complaints in August that the party had bounced a $100,000 check to the county for 2008 primary expenses.

At that time, Vela insisted the problem simply was a bank error. She said Wednesday that Adams told her “the bank gave us the wrong account number” when Compass Bank took over Laredo National Bank in 2008. She added that Tompkins never formally notified her that the check had bounced.

Tompkins disputed both of those points Wednesday.

“The check was bounced because there were insufficient funds to cover that $100,000, not because of a closed or wrong account,” he said. “I find it hard to believe that (Vela) is saying she just now found out about it when she had an e-mail I sent her back in July.”

Barrios-Van Os is hosting a meet-and-greet over dinner next week in San Antonio.

-- Jefferson County assistant auditor Keith Hawkes, for county treasurer.  Keith is a fraternity brother from college and has a compelling life story. This article in the Beaumont Enterprise online mentions six races in Jefferson County that will be decided on the Democratic ticket.

-- And Jody Crump, Orange County's first Republican and a childhood friend of my younger brother, challenges long-time Democratic incumbent Precinct 4 Commissioner Beamon Minton -- whose daughters also attended grade school with me.

-- No connection to me except through Southeast Texas: Hardin County officials who switched parties -- Democratic to Republican -- late last year also have several challengers:
Hardin County Democrats who filed for office Monday include Russell Wright for county judge; Sharon Overstreet for county treasurer; Chris Barnes and Thomas Tyler Jr. for Precinct 1 justice of the peace; and Valerie Stewart for Precinct 6 justice of the peace.

Hardin County is worth watching closely regarding the success of the TeaBagger phenomenon in suburban/exurban/rural Texas.

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