Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Texas Green Party fields over 50 candidates for 2014

Socratic Gadfly was first, and The Texas Tribune has left all of them off their brackets so far, but from the inbox...

The Texas Green Party has recruited more than 50 candidates for state and local office across Texas to occupy the ballot in 2014. This is historically the largest number of Green Party candidates that will appear on the ballot in Texas.

"We are very excited to be running so many principled progressive candidates throughout the state," said David Wager, co-chair of the Texas Green Party.

"Our goal is to provide a progressive alternative to the other two parties in Texas and offer voters more voices and more choices than they might otherwise have on the ballot," Wager said.

The most widely known candidate is food safety advocate and whistleblower Kenneth Kendrick of Wilson, who is running for Agriculture Commissioner.

Kendrick was a former manager of a Plainview peanut plant, operated by the now-defunct Peanut Corp. of America, where he alerted authorities and the public regarding alleged food safety violations. PCA went bankrupt after a nationwide salmonella outbreak that was traced to the Plainview plant. Seven people died and hundreds suffered from severe illness.

Many Green candidates, including Martina Salinas of Fort Worth, who is campaigning for a seat on the Texas Railroad Commission, advocate regulating, limiting, or banning the oil and gas extraction process known as hydraulic fracturing.

"With our state's future and the future of our families in mind, we need to hold all fracking operations, especially waste water disposal, to a high standard," said Salinas. "Even if it means stopping operations, we must ensure that our children's children and beyond can enjoy the beauty that is Texas."

Other Green candidates for statewide office include Emily Marie Sanchez of Del Rio for United States Senate; Brandon Parmer of Dallas for Governor; Chandrakantha Courtney of Houston for Lt. Governor; Jamar Osborne of Dallas for Attorney General; Deb Shafto of Houston for Comptroller; and Ulises Cabrera of Bryan for General Land Commissioner.

A full list of candidates will be released and a press conference held on Thursday in cities across the state. Details to follow.

Parmer ran against Joe Barton in CD-6 two years ago.  Courtney's husband, David, ran in 2012 for state Senate against Joan Huffman (garnering almost 9% of the vote without a Democrat in the race).  Shafto was the Greens' candidate for state representative against Garnet Coleman two years ago, and the party's candidate for governor four years ago.

No mention here about statewide judicial candidates, which would appear to be key to securing ballot access in 2016.  In 2012, two Greens cleared the 5% threshold for the party to acquire ballot access this election season; one was Charles Waterbury, who ran for state Supreme Court.  Texas Democrats left vacant the Place 8 slot on the SCOTX, and two positions on the state's Court of Criminal Appeals, Place 4 and Place 9.  If there is a Green running for those, then the absence of a D is usually enough for the GPTX to clear the ballot-access bar.

I'm also looking forward to the reveal of the Congressional candidates, as I heard some interesting rumors about a challenge to Sheila Jackson Lee.  According to my sources it's Remington Alessi, who ran against Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia in 2012.  Another intriguing campaign will be David Collins' bid for Harris County Judge.  The Democratic candidate in that race has been already been disparaged by the mighty Kuffner (scroll down to the third paragraph after the excerpt there).  I would expect Charles to vote for the Republican before he voted for a Green Democrat he didn't like, as he did in the last cycle in the DA's race.

More on the Democrats' filings, state and local, later today tomorrow.

Update: Via Indy Political Report, the Texas Libertarians.  They can also be found on the TexTrib's brackets at the top link.

Update II: Video of the Webb County Green Party press conference, en Espanol.  And the Laredo Morning Times...

Democratic incumbents U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, State Rep. Richard Raymond and State Rep. Tracy King were all expected to run unopposed.

However three candidates from the Green Party announced Monday that they plan to challenge each representative for their respective seats. Michael D. Cary of San Antonio will look to unseat Cuellar, who has held the office since 2005...

Both King and Raymond will be challenged by Green Party newcomers Marco Buentello and Nicolas Serna III for their respective district seats. King has represented District 80 for nearly 20 years while Raymond has been in office since 2001.

1 comment:

Gadfly said...

Thanks for the hat tip, and the email forwarding that made that possible.

You're right on the judicial races, as that's how Greens have gotten their current state party ballot-wide access. Unfortunately, Libertarians are running for land commish as well as ag commish; otherwise, a 5 percenter, even with a Dem in the race, just might ahve been possible there.

Oh, and I just posted the contents of that email on the Trib's comment box and told it to update its brackets.