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Posts Tagged ‘Ben Hall’

Do we really have to talk about the 2015 Mayoral race right now?

sigh All right, all right, if you insist. But let’s make it quick. The list of possible candidates thus far includes mainly those who have held or sought public office before, though analysts said the guessing game at this point is difficult. “There are always people who get in the race who no one expected […]

Post HERO, watch for the petition drives

Here’s the full Chron story about the passage of the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance. I’m going to skip ahead in the story and focus on what the haters are saying and planning to do. Opponent Dave Welch, of the Houston Area Pastors Council, said his group will begin gathering signatures against the ordinance to trigger […]

HPD’s good, bad, and ugly

The good news is that the testing of backlogged rape kits has led to the identification of a serial rapist in Houston. Houston police on Tuesday for the first time identified a criminal suspect – a possible serial rapist – from testing of sexual assault kits that once gathered dust in the police property room. […]

Precinct analysis: At Large 1, 4, and 5

Last week, we looked at the competitive At Large Council races. Now let’s look at the three At Large races that weren’t competitive. First up is At Large #1, where CM Stephen Costello won a third term. Dist Costello Griffin Costello% Griffin% ========================================= A 5,465 4,784 53.32% 46.68% B 5,535 4,291 56.33% 43.67% C 15,767 […]

Precinct analysis: Mayoral race

Precinct data arrived late on Friday, so you know what that means. I’ll be taking a look at all of the races this week. Let’s start with the main event, the Mayor’s race. Dist Drab Dick Cook Keryl Hall Parker Fitz Lane Perk =============================================================== A 59 2,439 231 64 2,911 7,072 100 148 78 B […]

EV Day 10: Two normally big days to go

We have completed ten days of early voting. Traditionally, the last two days are the big ones. Will we see the same this year? First, here are the comps: 2013 2011 2009 2007 Here’s a look at how turnout has gone over the first ten days of early voting for the past three municipal elections, […]

Ben Hall comes out against LGBT rights

I can honestly say I’m not surprised by this. Mayoral candidate Ben Hall spoke to KUHF this morning and (finally) spoke publicly regarding issues of equality for the LGBT community. Hall not only came out staunchly against introducing and implementing a non-discrimination ordinance in Houston, but also in repealing the Executive Order 150. Unfortunately for […]

Chron profile of Ben Hall

As promised from last week. When Ben Hall left the city attorney’s office in December 1994 after three years as a confidante to and attack dog for Mayor Bob Lanier, observers assumed the ambitious 38-year-old’s path would lead back to City Hall someday. Some thought the self-described “reliably controversial” barrister’s confrontational style was a liability, […]

Where things stand going into early voting

A few impressions of the state of the races as we head into early voting. Mayor – The thing that I will be looking for as initial results get posted at 7 PM on November 5 is how the gaggle of non-competitive candidates is doing. The thing about having nine candidates in a race, even […]

Chron profiles the Mayor

The Sunday Chron has an expansive profile of Mayor Parker. In a system where term limits cap elected officials at six years, City Hall veterans joke that new council members spend their first year finding the bathrooms and their sixth getting ignored by bureaucrats happy to wait them out. Parker, however, spent six years on […]

Interview with Ben Hall

In the era of term limits, we usually only get contested Mayoral races in the open years. Lee Brown faced a strong challenge from Orlando Sanchez and Chris Bell in 2001, prevailing in a runoff. Many people expected Mayor Parker to face a similar challenge this year after her bare-majority win over a field of […]

Endorsement watch: For the Mayor

The Chron endorses Mayor Parker for a third term. During Annise Parker’s first term, Houston was stuck in a drought. The global economy was in an economic downturn. And City Hall had to prune a budget suffering from wilting revenues. At the end of her second term, the grass is green again. Houston’s supercharged energy […]

30 Day fundraising reports are coming in

For the Mayor’s race at least, they’re a lot like the July reports. Even as top mayoral challenger Ben Hall ramped up his campaign in recent months, launching several television ads, Mayor Annise Parker continued to outpace him in fundraising, according to campaign finance reports released Monday. Records show Parker took in $755,070 between July […]

Hall’s tax troubles, again

This isn’t new news, but it’s getting a lot more play now. Top mayoral challenger Ben Hall agreed to pay the IRS more than $680,000 in back taxes and penalties earlier this year, court documents show. On Jan. 16, less than a week before Hall made his first campaign expenditures as a mayoral candidate, the […]

Have you gotten your text from the Ben Hall campaign?

The Ben Hall campaign sent out this press release on Tuesday: The Ben Hall for Mayor campaign has launched a new initiative to reach Houston voters and communicate with them on a platform where they already spend a lot of their time – their cell phones. The Hall campaign has partnered with Politikast, a mobile […]

KHOU polls the Mayor’s race

The first poll of the season is always exciting news. Annise Parker seems headed for a runoff in her campaign to keep her job, but she commands more than twice as many supporters as her leading challenger in a newly released poll commissioned by KHOU 11 News and KUHF – Houston Public Radio. Still, just […]

Endorsement watch: SEIU and HAR

This came in on Thursday: SEIU (Service Employees International Union) Texas, including janitors who clean office buildings, housekeeping workers at GRB and food service workers, have endorsed Mayor Annise Parker for re-election. Houston members have also launched an effort to outreach to Latino and African American voters in their neighborhoods. Mayor Parker’s commitment to creating […]

A deeper look at the city’s pension funds

I appreciate this just-the-facts analysis of the city’s pension funds. It’s delightfully free of fearmongering and doomsaying, which tend to cloud most stories on the funds. I don’t have anything specific to say about the article, but I do want to make a few general points about the city’s pension situation. 1. I reject the […]

We must destroy the pensions in order to save them

There’s so much wrong with this I almost don’t know where to begin. Houston is the Titanic – it certainly looks impressive, but icebergs lie ahead. That’s the image that mayoral candidate Ben Hall drew when he talked to the Houston Chronicle editorial board last week. No debate here. Like an iceberg on the horizon, […]

The Mayor’s race in three numbers

1. Turnout In the 2009 runoff, there were 155,670 votes cast for Mayor. Annise Parker got 82,175 and Gene Locke got 73,495. In the 2011 general election, there were 118,414 votes cast for Mayor. Annise Parker got 60,135 and the other candidates combined for 58,279. To put this another way, there were 37,256 fewer votes […]

Hall’s five point crimefighting plan

From the inbox: Houstonians do not feel safe in their homes and their communities. Houston’s crime numbers remain dangerously high and criminals are victimizing us daily. The only thing we hear from the Mayor’s office on this issue is silence. It is unacceptable. “As Mayor, I will make sure that criminals know this City belongs […]

Just so we’re clear, cities don’t run the schools

Lisa Falkenberg does some fact checking. Houston Mayoral Candidate Ben Hall seems to have done his homework before he began claiming that, if elected, he’d have statutory authority over local schools. But he apparently didn’t check his interpretation of the statute with the Texas Education Agency. In an interview last week, Hall criticized Mayor Annise […]

The 2013 lineup

So many candidates. More than 60 candidates have filed to run for city of Houston elective office this fall, many of them rushing in before the 5 p.m. Monday deadline. [...] Atop the ballot, [Mayor Annise] Parker is challenged by wealthy attorney Ben Hall, conservative Eric Dick, repeat Green Party candidate Don Cook, and six […]

Hall and the firefighters

Ben Hall has the support of the firefighters’ union. He has also criticized Mayor Parker for not doing enough to deal with the financial stability of the pension funds. How does he reconcile these two seemingly contradictory positions? Not surprisingly, he’s light on the details. The fire union’s endorsement puts Hall in a political pickle. […]

What would Ben Hall do for schools?

Ben Hall made his official filing for Mayor on Wednesday, and had a campaign rally after ward. This story is about that and about a new video his campaign released, and it contains three ways in which Hall says he is different than Mayor Parker. One of them is worth highlighting here: 2. Education: “We […]

Chron wants multiple multi-candidate debates

Don’t know if they’ll get what they want, but it can’t hurt to ask. For the main show, mayoral candidate Ben Hall has called for six one-on-one debates with Mayor Annise Parker, albeit with three debates after early voting begins. Parker has rejected Hall’s proposal, agreeing only to one debate featuring multiple candidates. Houston’s future […]

On PACs in city elections

Houston Politics looks at something we haven’t seen much of in city elections – PACs that are candidate-specific instead of being centered on a referendum. Among the topics bandied about last week was why [Ben] Hall and District A candidate Brenda Stardig (who is seeking to regain the seat she lost in 2011 to current […]

Debating about debates

There will be some number of debates between Mayor Parker and Ben Hall between now and Election Day. How many debates, and how many participants there will be in those debates, is itself a matter of debate. In a letter to [Mayor Annise] Parker this week, [Ben] Hall sought three debates after Labor Day on […]

A closer look at Mayoral campaign finances

I said I’d get to a closer look at the Mayoral campaign finance reports later, after I had a chance to read all the way through them. That time is now, so let’s have our look. Mayor Parker’s finance report. The Mayor’s report clocks in at 701 pages, with more than 500 of those pages […]

Endorsement watch: The firefighters still don’t like the Mayor

Last week, the Ben Hall campaign teased on its Facebook page that it was about to get a “game-changer” endorsement. This week, that endorsement was announced. The Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association announced they will be endorsing Ben Hall in his challenge to incumbent Mayor Annise Parker in this year’s mayoral campaign. This comes well […]

Mayor Parker kicks off her campaign

It’s the time of the season for Mayor Parker, who has a serious challenger this time, but also a stronger hand to play. In her tenure, Parker has given teeth to the city’s historic preservation rules, broken a deadlock with Harris County to help build the Dynamo stadium, gave scandal-ridden Metro new leaders and revised […]

An early look at At Large #3

A little while back, Campos listed all of the people who had filed designations of treasurer for city office, which is the step you need to take before you can raise any money for a campaign. As expected, the field for City Council At Large #3, the only open At Large seat, is already crowded. […]

On African-American turnout in city elections

Bill King makes an observation about Ben Hall’s chances in the upcoming Mayoral election. When Lee Brown was elected mayor in 1997, many pundits predicted that with Houston’s growing minority community, Houston had seen its last white mayor. That, of course, proved not to be the case as Bill White and Annise Parker defeated minority […]

More on Hall’s announcement

Here’s the full Chron story from the weekend about Ben Hall’s announcement that yes, he really is running for Mayor this year. “Hall is a formidable challenger but is a long shot to unseat the mayor,” University of Houston political scientist Brandon Rottinghaus said in an email. Rottinghaus noted Hall’s funding capability, his vision and […]