Off the Kuff Rotating Header Image

December 29th, 2012:

Saturday video break: Girl, You’ll Be A Woman Soon

Song #38 on the Popdose Top 100 Covers list is “Girl, You’ll Be A Woman Now”, originally by Neil Diamond and covered by Urge Overkill. Here’s the original:

To borrow from Linus Van Pelt, of all the Neil Diamond songs in the world, that one may just be the Neil Diamond-est. I can’t believe Dave Barry never discussed it. Anyway, here’s the cover:

Less Neil Diamond-y, and it has the Tarantino thing going for it, but not really my thing, either. They can’t all be winners. What do you think?

There are eight candidates who have filed for SD06

Yesterday I made an inquiry with the Elections division of the Secretary of State’s office, to ask how many candidates had filed for the special election in SD06. They kindly forwarded me a scan of all eight candidate applications, which you can see here. (Stace and PDiddie reported on this yesterday afternoon. The only mainstream media coverage of which I am aware came from La Voz.) Here’s what I can tell you about the eight candidates, listed in alphabetical order:

Carol AlvaradoFacebookTwitter

Alvarado is the State Rep in HD145, in her third term. She served three terms as Houston City Council member in District I before that.

RW BrayFacebook

Bray was the Republican nominee for SD06 in 2012, winning 29% of the vote. He was Chief of Staff for District A Council member Helena Brown before resigning in April.

Susan Delgado – No website, Facebook page, or Twitter account, as far as I can tell.

Delgado was once the mistress of the late Sen. Gallegos. She subsequently ran against him twice, as a write-in in 2004 and a Libertarian in 2008. Despite that, she lists her party affiliation as “Democratic” on her application.

Sylvia GarciaFacebookTwitter

Garcia was County Commissioner in Harris County Precinct 2 for two terms, and before that she was Houston City Controller for three terms.

Joaquin MartinezFacebook

Martinez is a first time candidate, who once worked on the staff of former Council member John Castillo. Here’s a NewsFix report on him.

Dorothy OlmosFacebook

The webpage is for Olmos’ most recent candidacy, as a Republican for SBOE 4. She runs for a lot of things – HISD Board of Trustees in 2011, and HD 143 in 2004, 2005 (special election), 2006, and 2008. The Facebook page is her personal page – the Facebook link on her candidate page is broken; though there is a Twitter icon next to it, there is no link to a Twitter account.

Rodolfo Reyes

Reyes served one term on League City Council, from 1994-97. As noted by Stace and PDiddie, he did not fill in the party affiliation field on his application.

Maria Selva

Selva was the Green Party candidate for CD29 in 2012.

As of Friday, there were no 30 day finance reports yet. We know that Garcia and Alvarado both had healthy amounts of cash as of July. Of the candidates that had to file reports for 2012, neither Bray nor Olmos reported any significant funds on their 8 day reports from October; I did not find any finance reports for Selva on the FEC webpage. The sheer number of candidates almost certainly guarantees a runoff, but I don’t believe it changes the dynamic from what we’ve all known it to be since the beginning, that this is a two-way race between Alvarado and Garcia. PDiddie thinks Bray has a shot at the runoff based on his showing in November, but I don’t buy it. Bray got the votes of the people in SD06 who showed up to vote for Mitt Romney or Ted Cruz and then stuck around to vote downballot, as well as the straight ticket R vote. Neither is in play in this race. The only people who will vote are those who a) know there’s an election and b) have a reason to vote for one of the candidates. Unless Bray, or any other candidate not named Alvarado or Garcia, can raise the money to reach people who will vote for him, or gets a boost from an outside party like the Harris County GOP, who is actually going to show up for him? I think he’s a step ahead of the rest of the pack due to his candidacy in the previous election, but as PDiddie correctly notes the R vote will likely be split between him and Olmos. I think it’s an Alvarado-Garcia runoff in March, and any other outcome will surprise me.

Dewhurst campaign aide accused of stealing contributions

Oops.

Maybe this is why he was so sad

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst’s campaign manager is under criminal scrutiny, suspected of stealing at least $600,000 — and possibly more than $1 million — from the Republican’s political accounts over the past several years.

Kenneth “Buddy” Barfield, a longtime GOP consultant who most recently managed Dewhurst’s failed run for the U.S. Senate, has been accused of falsifying documents to the Texas Ethics Commission that overstated the cash in Dewhurst’s state campaign committee by hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Barfield, who also directed Dewhurst’s re-election campaign for lieutenant governor in 2010, did not return calls to his cellphone Thursday.

The original reports, examined by The Dallas Morning News, allegedly allowed Barfield to conceal huge sums of money taken from the David Dewhurst Committee since 2008 until Dewhurst associates discovered the improprieties this month.

After Dewhurst and his top aides confronted him, Barfield offered to repay the money — but was unable to do so, one campaign official said. Officials then alerted the Travis County district attorney’s office on Dec. 20, asked for an investigation and submitted revised reports to the ethics commission.

[…]

The alleged scheme went undetected, largely because Barfield, in his high-ranking role, had access to the committee’s bank accounts and little oversight from others, said campaign officials who agreed to speak on condition of anonymity.

They said Barfield concealed illicit transactions by submitting false financial reports to the Dewhurst campaign, including fake bank deposit slips and fraudulent invoices to the campaign for services that were never rendered by him or one of his consulting companies.

For example, one of his companies handled media buys for the campaign, which spent millions of dollars on TV commercials for the lieutenant governor’s race.

A day after contacting Travis County prosecutors, the Dewhurst campaign committee filed 11 amended finance reports with the ethics commission, spelling out the accusations and providing some details on the missing money as well as correcting totals in reports for the past five years.

Up to a million dollars may be at issue here. I’ll keep an eye on this, as I’m sure it will be a rather unwelcome distraction for Dewhurst during the session and his upcoming primary race. To be honest, I’m a little surprised there haven’t been more such allegations. Given the huge amounts of money spent in this past election, the secrecy involved with a lot of big-dollar PACs, and the wildly varying rates that can be charged for things like TV ad buys, it’s not hard to imagine grifters of various stripe seeing lots of opportunity in this kind of work. I have a feeling Dewhurst will have some company, inside and outside Texas, any time now. The Trib, which has another excellent photo of The Dew, TPM, and Juanita have more.

It’s a dog eat donut world

What interested me the most in this story about the locally-based Shipley’s Do-Nuts is what wasn’t said.

The changes are coming at a time when competition in the breakfast industry is stronger than ever.

Coffee chains are offering more breakfast pastries, and even ethnic bakeries are gaining favor with the general public, said Chris Tripoli, a restaurant consultant.

“We just have more choices now,” Tripoli said. “So what they’re trying to do is position the standard doughnut place for the next decade because it’s never going to be like it was 10 or 20 years ago.”

A national doughnut chain is about to crowd the field even more.

Earlier this year, the Canton-Mass.-based parent of Dunkin’ Donuts said it would expand here.

There are five Dunkin’ Donut stores here today, compared to Shipley’s 115 locations.

Remember when Krispy Kreme came to town a decade or so ago, to much hype and fanfare? A few years later, the franchise was gone from Houston as the national business experienced problems. If they can survive that, I figure they can survive whatever else comes their way. Be that as it may, I find it interesting that this piece of history went unmentioned in the story. You’d think the fact that they’d been down this road before would be worth noting.