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Endorsement watch: Wu and Vo

Clearly I was wrong about the Chron ignoring legislative endorsements, as they now have two more to follow Ann Johnson‘s. First up is an endorsement of Gene Wu to be Rep. Scott Hochberg’s successor in HD137.

Gene Wu

We believe that Democrat Gene Wu has the educational background and passion for policy that make him the best candidate to succeed Hochberg.

A former Harris County assistant district attorney, Wu’s experience isn’t limited to the legal arena. With a master’s in public policy from the University of Texas, Wu worked at the Texas Workforce Commission to improve standards for community colleges and technical schools and served as chief clerk for the House Higher Education Committee. These are particularly pertinent areas of experience, given the importance of building an educated workforce and the education budget battles in Austin.

Wu talks about education policy with the specificity of an experienced politician, arguing for proper student-to-teacher ratios, reforming high-stakes testing and improving vocational training. He also offers high praise for schools like KIPP and YES Prep that create a cultural respect for learning, which can often help students more than anything else.

Wu also has a deep connection to his district, regularly volunteering with the Skills for Living program and tutoring at-risk youth at Sharpstown High School. He exhibits an exhaustive understanding of his home turf and hopes to attract the businesses that will serve and support the middle-class families that are the growing base of the area. This is the sort of forward thinking that voters should want for a district that covers areas like Gulfton and Sharpstown.

The Chron has made three endorsements in HD137, having gone with Joe Madden in the primary and Jamaal Smith in the runoff. This was a testament to the depth and quality of the candidates running in the Democratic primary, as they said at the time. I’d encourage you to go back and listen to the interview I did with Wu for the primary, because the qualities the Chron talks about in this endorsement really came through in that conversation. I’ve no doubt at all that Wu will be an excellent representative.

The Chron also endorsed four-term Rep. Hubert Vo for re-election.

Rep. Hubert Vo

Texas House District 149 is one of the most diverse in the state, covering west Harris County from I-10 south to Alief, including Mission Bend. The Democratic incumbent Hubert Vo, a Vietnamese immigrant, reflects the diversity of his district and is the right choice in this election.

In his past races, Vo stood as an attractive alternative to candidates who embodied some of Texas’ worst policy instincts, such as underfunding government services and leaving available federal dollars on the table. Since his first election to the Texas House in 2004, Vo has fulfilled his promises of working to fully fund CHIP, support education and serve local needs at the Legislature. A reliable defender of these important issues, Vo rightfully points out that budget fights will happen every year due to a structural budget shortfall – the kind that we can’t cut our way out of. Voters should appreciate this sort of honest talk from a politician.

One of Vo’s greatest achievements for his district was the creation of the International Management District, located along Bellaire and Bissonnet between Beltway 8 and Highway 6. This district has allowed for reinvestment in local infrastructure and a dedicated focus on attracting businesses. And the district’s success in improving public safety by contracting with the constable’s office and private security has not only bolstered business but created safer neighborhoods.

I’ve been a fan of Rep. Vo’s since his first run for office in 2004. Good guy, good representative, good fit for his district.

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5 Comments

  1. Ross says:

    So Kuff, you have no problems with Vo being a slumlord and using his State office to try and intimidate law enforcement officials?

  2. I believe there is also a lot of recent news on Vo. The Chronicle endorsement is qualified and chides Vo for his recent lack of focus. The endorsement also mentions his oponent, Dianne Williams as being a good candidate but lacking experience in Austin. That could be a good thing. I assure you that Vo will get bowled over by the Republican majority while Dianne will stand her ground and insure balance and genuine advocacy for public education.

    Futher, Vo, will not answer the question……is he aware of voter intimitaion? Many Vietnamese firmly believe that Vo knows who they vote for. Additionally the past incentives to vote via discounts and gift cards for local retail stores have been orchestrated by Vo’s supporters. Vo refused to ask for the effort to be stopped. These are serious issues that I believe have not been given their due!

    Mr. Vo should retire. The International Business Management District was instituted in a small part of District 149 with the help of Mr. Vo. While Mr. Vo lives in Fort Bend County, his commercial holdings are in this new Management District within 149. His property values are benefiting greatly from the new arrangement.

    The Slum Lord label is an old one. What is disturbing is that crime is way up in the area, and Mission Bend, Alief and many other parts of the District have been left behind by the rest of the booming Houston. Dianne Williams is clearly a better choice!

  3. joshua bullard says:

    my beef is with gene woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo,,,i am having to battle with the guy every day at bayland comminuty center,the chron picked up on it late in the game, gene is a live wire,this guy is going to bring disgrace to the d party,yesterday he almost got into a physical fight with two women over immigration reform on the grounds-my support goes to his challenger mj khan the former houston city council member of that district.

    joshua ben bullard reporting.

  4. Greg Wythe says:

    I think the word “battle” needs some clarification. One does not battle in a lawn chair.

  5. It appears that when Democrats run a foul…..they get a free pass. I would like to see Mr. Kuffner scrutinze his Democrat compariots with a little more vigor. In any event crime is up in District 149, home values continue to plummet while in other areas the values are rising, and Alief and Mission Bend have been left behind the economic upturn of the greater Houston area. Dianne Williams understands the District from an educational, economic, and residential standpoint. The District needs jobs and not just fast food and retail jobs in strip shopping centers. The District needs a fresh start! Vote for Dianne Williams……!

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