We’re now more than a month into the city election fundraising season, and as of this week the only person to file a declaration of Treasurer for the office of Mayor is the incumbent, Annise Parker. As of this time two years ago, all four major candidates had not only filed Treasurer’s reports but had already made formal announcements of their candidacies. Anyone who may be interested in challenging Mayor Parker now has one less month in which to raise money for their campaign.
At this point, I can’t even say there’s much happening in the rumor mill. I’d heard some chatter about two weeks ago that Council Member C.O. Bradford was going to be meeting with “advisors” about a possible entry into the race, but nothing since then. I’ve not heard a peep about Paul Bettencourt since his profile in the Chron was published nearly two months ago. Bradford as we know is not exactly flush with cash, and isn’t known as a prodigious fundraiser. Bettencourt, who likely can raise some bucks but would be starting out at zero, has never run in a non-partisan city election before, and has never really run in a race where his party wasn’t expected to make up a majority of the voters. The clock is ticking, for them and for anyone else out there who might be thinking about it.
It’s still early, and Mayor Parker is neither as popular as Bill White was six years ago nor in as favorable a climate, so it’s still the case that anything can happen. But the longer we go without anyone taking a concrete step towards a candidacy, the less likely it is that anything of consequence will happen.