LegeLand: Howard Wins in a Squeaker

Four-vote margin = four more years

Donna Howard
Donna Howard

Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, has won her House District 48 seat – again. On Feb. 12, master of discovery Rep. Will Hartnett, R-Dallas, ruled that Dan Neil's election challenge should be dismissed. Through the long process of recounts and hearings, which included voters explaining in an open hearing whom they voted for, attorneys for the challenger managed to whittle down Howard's margin of victory from 16 votes to only four. Neil had requested a special election, arguing that the existing result was too close to call. But Hartnett ruled that Neil had found no intentional voter fraud and that, even with ballots removed for accidental technical violations of the law, the Democrat won on Nov. 2, 2010, fair and square. In a statement, Howard thanked everyone involved in the hearings and said, "The presentation and thorough review of the evidence was a critical part of determining the true winner of this election." The report now goes before a panel of nine members of the House and then to the full floor – unless Neil decides to withdraw his challenge.

Got something to say on the subject? Send a letter to the editor.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 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  

READ MORE
More Donna Howard
If It's Broke, Don't Fix It
If It's Broke, Don't Fix It
Texas school finance system ruled constitutional

Richard Whittaker, May 20, 2016

Lege Lines: Kill Bill(s)
Lege Lines: Kill Bill(s)
Abbott vetoes more than 40 bills

Richard Whittaker, June 26, 2015

More by Richard Whittaker
In a Violent Nature
An undead monster is revived and seeks revenge of a group of teens

May 31, 2024

Ethan Hawke and the Inner Life of Flannery O’Connor in <i>Wildcat</i>
Ethan Hawke and the Inner Life of Flannery O’Connor in Wildcat
Finding the drama of an author who laughed at her own biography

May 29, 2024

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Donna Howard, Dan Neil

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

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