And Kuempel Makes Twelve

Speaker candidate list swells as Seguin Republican files paperwork

Rep. Kuempel: Everyone else is doing it, so why not him?
Rep. Kuempel: Everyone else is doing it, so why not him?

Yesterday, Newsdesk joked that maybe we'd have 12 candidates for house speaker before Christmas.

Seems like Rep. Edmund Kuempel, R-Seguin, has decided to make our Christmas wish come true by filing to run for the big seat. The vice-chair of the Culture, Recreation, and Tourism committee has been in the House since 1983. He's been there so long, in fact, that due to redistricting he's represented three districts – House Districts 45, 46 and now 44 – without moving, and was talked about as a potential speaker back in 2002.

Last session, his big legislative wins were structural reforms of the Texas County and District Retirement System and the Texas Municipal Retirement System (although he probably got the most column inches for House Bill 308, which allowed legally blind hunters to use laser sights.)

Austinites with a longer memory may remember him as the man that tried to gut both the McMansion and Save Our Springs ordinances. However, Rep. Donna Howard is bringing back his 2007 proposal to place the Lower Colorado River Authority under state sunset review (you can read more about what local legislators are planning for the upcomong session here.)

Newsdesk is now wishing for a pony.

Got something to say? The Chronicle welcomes opinion pieces on any topic from the community. Submit yours now at

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Speaker Race
Strama Leaving House
Strama Leaving House
Updated: Mayoral rumors swirl as successors line up

Richard Whittaker, Feb. 21, 2013

Straus The Survivor
Straus The Survivor
How the coup to remove the Texas House Speaker strengthened him

Richard Whittaker, Jan. 10, 2013

More Texas House of Representatives
Dawnna Dukes' Charges Dropped
Dawnna Dukes' Charges Dropped
13 felonies gone, two misdemeanors resolved

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 24, 2017

Houston Voters Say No to
Houston Voters Say No to "Robin Hood"
HISD rejects making school finance payments

Richard Whittaker, Nov. 15, 2016

More by Richard Whittaker
Hotel Transylvania: Transformania
The monsterific animated franchise lumbers back out of the tomb

Jan. 14, 2022

Social media and fairy tales meet in this gorgeous, grounded version of Beauty and the Beast

Jan. 14, 2022


Speaker Race, Texas House of Representatives, Ed Kuempel

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle