The results are in

Our preference poll for the 127th House Dist returned these results:

1. Huberty 
2. Curling  loses to Huberty by 26–13
3. Wiseman  loses to Huberty by 27–12, loses to Curling by 19–17
4. Basaldua  loses to Huberty by 26–12, loses to Wiseman by 21–17
5. Montemayor  loses to Huberty by 36–3, loses to Basaldua by 29–5

The names were presented randomly, with no party identification.  450 participants (from the kwtps mail list) were invited, just under 10% of invitees responded.

Thanks for your time, shall we do it again?

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Published in: on February 12, 2010 at 4:45 pm  Leave a Comment  

Are we stupid?

Just 8 percent of Americans want the members of Congress re-elected, according to a CBS News-New York Times poll taken nine months before roughly one-third of the Senate and the entire House face voters. 

The Feb. 5-10 survey found 81 percent of respondents saying the lawmakers shouldn’t receive another term.

And yet, that same public will almost undoubtedly return about 90 percent of incumbents running for reelection to office.

Published in: on February 12, 2010 at 4:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

City Hall to Neuter Term Limits?

In 1994 Houston voters backed term limits on City Hall 79%-21%.  Ever since, ambitious politicos and their patrons have tried to overturn the 3 term, 6 year limitation. 

Unable to roll back term limits locally, mayors and council members enlisted friendly legislators such as Garnet Coleman to carry bills that would have had the State of Texas force Houston voters to revisit what we had already decided.  These efforts failed, but City Hall was not ready to give up.

Along with skyrocketing debt, Bill White dropped a ‘term limit commission’ in our laps as he departed Bagby St.  This commission, comprised of assorted insiders, former officeholders and chaired by former Ambassador/current well connected lawyer Arthur Schechter will issue ‘recommendations’ no later than  July 1, 2010.  The recommendations would appear on the November ballot or possibly as a charter change in ’11.

The commission’s first public session is set for Wed. Feb 10, 7pm at City Hall council chambers, 901 Bagby.

A good guess would have the commission recommend either additonal terms, lengthening existing terms or letting officeholders sit out a term and then come back.

This is not the time to extend city hall terms.  It may be time to reduce the current 3 term, 6 year limit to 4 years.  There is virtually no competition for any council member or mayor once elected.  Each is viewed as being there for 6 years.  Bert Keller is the only councilman in recent memory to not get his 6 years, but it took a drunk driving incident and some ill advised comments to send him away.

Please give the commission the gift of your good counsel.  Feel free to attend the public meetings, for informational purposes of course. 

Since the current denizens of city hall will have to put the changes on the ballot, remind them that efforts to extend their time at the trough may well have the opposite effect.

link to commission: http://www.houstontx.gov/citizensnet/TermLimitsHearing020510.html

Published in: on February 8, 2010 at 9:23 pm  Comments (2)  

Online HR 3200 – Healthcare Bill

In case you have not seen a copy of the only bill that is available to us,  HR 3200, you can access it, download and save your own copy (adobe pfd). 
 
Here is one link to it.   
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_bills&docid=f:h3200ih.txt.pdf
 
This is the bill that the House Commerce and Energy Committee,  chaired by Henry Waxman,  “voted out of committee” at the last minute before going on Summer recess.  It is supposedly ready for floor debate (unless the House leaders use parliamentary procedures to forego debate) when the House returns.  The bill is 1017 pages long so think twice before hitting “print”.  It is easy to access and review digitally.  
 
The Senate reportedly is working on four  bills in various committees, none of which have advanced “out of committee”; thus not available to us.     At a Senator McCaskill (D-MO) town hall meeting,  the senator kept telling the attendees they were wrong about what was in “the health care bill” when they referred to specific sections of HR 3200.   When they learned that “the” Health care bill she was referring  to was on her laptop and not available to them, some became a bit frustrated.  She was surprised to learn that they didn’t trust her. 
 
And there is yet another health care bill, the President’s “my bill”. He  repeatedly refers  to “my bill” when he  tells those who read HR 3200 that what they read doesn’t exist.   Apparently  no one in the House, Senate or the public has seen “my bill”.    You would think he would have given “my bill”  to Henry Waxman and had it voted on instead of HR 3200…possibly he hasn’t written  “my bill” yet.

Published in: on August 12, 2009 at 8:35 pm  Leave a Comment