Skip to comments.9 Republicans, 2 Democrats vie for Paul's seat (TX)
Posted on 05/25/2012 10:36:19 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued
The favorite in the Republican race is Randy Weber, 58, a two-term state representative from Pearland and the former owner of an air-conditioning company he started in 1981. Weber, who has been endorsed by Gov. Rick Perry, touts a 2009 poll sponsored by the Texas Conservative Coalition that rated him the most conservative member of the Texas House.
Paul, who represented the district for 24 years, though not consecutively, endorsed Weber's two campaigns for the Texas House, but so far has not endorsed a successor.
A Beaumont base
Weber has raised $282,000 for the race and had the second-highest amount of cash on hand, $227,000 as of the reporting period that ended April 30. He has lent his campaign $100,000 of his own money.
Relying on Jefferson County support are Jay Old, a 49-year-old Beaumont defense attorney, and Michael Truncale, a former Texas State University System regent from Beaumont and a State Republican Executive Committee member.
Old, 48, is a defense lawyer who represents hospitals, doctors and other businesses after they have been sued. He is the top fundraiser in the field, with $308,000 available as of April 30.
His Republican opponents are quick to point out that Old has contributed to Democratic campaigns and voted in a Democratic primary as recently as 2010. His defense is that Jefferson County traditionally has been heavily Democratic and supporting the party was the only way to influence local races.
She would have to move
Truncale, 54, also is well-funded, with $149,000 on hand.
Lawyer Felicia Harris, 42, a member of the Pearland City Council, is the only woman in the race. She lives a few miles outside the district - as did Weber until his recent relocation to Alvin - although she has said she would move if she wins.
(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...
It’s interesting that for all his prominence, Ron Paul didn’t have a Libertarian successor waiting in the wings.
Wait, didn't he run and win as a Republican?
That is my biggest b!tch with the guy. Run as what you really are. Don’t be a hypocrite.
He is not even close to my district, but I sure won’t cry to see him leave, if he does.
Can’t run as a Libertarian because Libertarians can’t win Congressional races (the highest office one has ever legitimately won was State Representative). Same goes with Communists. They can’t win under that banner, so they go with the banner they can win under... Democrat.
Maybe at some time the people in his district will wake up.
Maybe that will end the never ending presidental runs.
Ron Paul won as a Republican in a heavily Democrat district.
What year are you referring to ? He’s won for Congress on and off since the 1970s.
Age is catching up with him (he turns 77 this year). He’s finally retiring with this election (he’s been in Congress on and off since 1976).
Yep...nine Repubs running against 2 Dems.
Sounds like a Democratic district to me.
Seriously, there are many blue districts turning red.
I hope you are right. I would hope he would agree he is too old in another four years to run for the “gold”.
Paul has served in two different Congressional districts. When he first ran in 1974, it was a Houston suburban district (the 22nd). At the time, it elected Conservative Tory Democrat Robert Casey (who’d been in office since 1958). While the district was trending GOP at the time nationally, it had effectively been a Democrat district since Reconstruction. Casey obliterated Paul by a margin of 70-28% (in fact, Paul was the WORST performing Republican Casey had ever faced !). Casey had close calls in the ‘60s, 1962 he only won by 7% (close when you consider how weak the TX GOP was in those days).
When Casey retired midterm in 1976, it forced a special election. Center-right Democrat State Sen. Bob Gammage narrowly placed 1st in an all-party primary ahead of Paul, who placed 2nd (42-40%). In an upset, Paul beat Gammage in the runoff by a margin of 56-44%. It didn’t last, though, as 7 months later, they faced off in November in a rematch, and this time Gammage beat Paul for the full term by less than 300 votes (each tied 50-50%) (Ford won the district by about 500 votes over Carter, though Nixon had won it in a landslide in 1972).
Paul didn’t stop running and ran against Gammage for the 3rd consecutive election in 1978, and ousted Gammage by just 1,200 votes (1%). Paul had a close call in 1980 against Mike Andrews (a future Congressman from an adjacent district), but won by a 51-48% margin. In 1982, he had no opponent and left the seat in 1984 to run unsuccessfully for the Senate (losing the primary to Phil Gramm by an embarrassing margin of 73% to 16%). By this time, his district was solidly Republican and Tom DeLay succeeded him, racking up landslide wins.
He officially left the GOP after his loss and was the Libertarian candidate for President in 1988 (where he effectively ran against the Reagan legacy). With Tom DeLay firmly ensconced in his Congressional district, he was out of Congress for a dozen years waiting for another opportunity. It happened in 1996. Southwest of Houston spreading down the coast was the 14th district. Like his old district, it had previously been Democrat (a labor leaning district with a fairly substantial Hispanic presence), but had been in some upheaval from the post-Watergate period.
The longtime Democrat incumbent was primaried out in 1978 after sexual misconduct allegations were aired. The Democrat who beat him served just one term and abruptly quit because of “personal problems” (alcoholism and homosexuality). A longtime liberal Democrat State Senator, William Patman (whose father had been an East TX Congressman beginning a half-century earlier) claimed the seat despite hopes for the GOP to get it in 1980. Peculiarly, in 1982, the prior Democrat incumbent from 1979-81, decided to make a comeback, but this time running as a Republican (which he lost to Patman, 61-39%).
In 1984 was a breakthrough year in TX for many seats won by the GOP. In a surprise upset, Patman lost to Republican Mac Sweeney, 51-49%. By all accounts, Sweeney should’ve turned the district into a Republican one, but he had problems himself (he misrepresented his education in law school in campaign bios, and basically was in over his head in DC, couldn’t manage his office, racked up debts over campaigning he couldn’t repay). In 1986, he was challenged by Democrat Greg Laughlin, who held him to an unimpressive 52% win. By 1988, it was over for Sweeney and he was tossed out in a rematch with Greg Laughlin.
Laughlin was reasonable (for a Democrat), but the district was still GOP-leaning, so he head some close calls, but managed to hold on. After 1994, it was apparent that Laughlin was somewhat unhappy as a Democrat and he was targeted by Speaker Gingrich for a party switch. In June 1995, Laughlin followed through and did just that. With that out of the way, he expected to have little trouble with future elections in the district. However, this was Ron Paul’s comeback. He charged Laughlin had switched out of opportunism (there were still more than a few Democrats more Conservative than Laughlin who hadn’t switched, such as Charles Stenholm or Ralph Hall).
Now, when the primary came, Laughlin beat Paul by a margin of 43-32%, but it was the runoff where Paul came from behind to defeat Laughlin 54-46%. However, Paul’s entry was not without problems and the Democrats came uncomfortably close to recapturing the district that year (1996), and Paul won by just 51-48% over Charles “Lefty” Morris. Still, the district is reliably Republican today and Paul’s narrowest margin in the past decade was in 2006, and he still won with 60%. Of course, neither of those two districts (Paul’s previous district is now held by Pete Olson) are Democrat anymore.
It has been redistricted.
Before the recent redistricting.
I was referring to this period.
Ofcourse most of Texas started going Republican, but it was still a competitive district before the recent redistricting.
Okay, but who gets his cult followers ... and the blimps?
It looks like the Republicans are going to lose a seat in MI due to lack of signatures, but it looks like they will pick up this seat in Texas.
Isn't that what the Teaparty movement is about?
I thought his other son would run for his father’s seat. Guess not.
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