Election Ticker: Early Voting Begins Monday

Victory for voting rights, political parties (the fun kind), the latest endorsements

Election Ticker: Early Voting Begins Monday

Victory for Student Voters: If Mike Siegel's underdog Democratic campaign for Congress (TX-10, against longtime GOP incumbent Michael McCaul) doesn't end in victory Nov. 6, it has already won a crucial victory for student voters of Prairie View A&M. Recently, Waller County officials imposed new conditions on student voters – "change-of-address" documentation that contradicted earlier instructions from those same officials. When Siegel campaign staffer Jacob Aronowitz submitted a letter to Waller County officials protesting the new policy, he was arrested (a county staffer objected to his snapping a photo of the delivery). After intervention from the Texas Secretary of State – as well as national headlines, including a Siegel appearance on The Rachel Maddow Show – county officials reversed themselves, in the latest episode of decades of official obstruction of majority-black PVAMU voters in majority-white Waller County. In addition to vindicating student voting rights, the episode might serve to raise Siegel's candidate profile sufficiently to put a dent in McCaul's gerrymandering-and-incumbency advantage...

Pod Not God: If you haven't had Too Much Beto (is that actually a thing?), underdog Senate candidate Beto O'Rourke will be at the Paramount Theatre Friday night, Oct. 19, for a special episode of Pod Save America, the politics podcast hosted by ex-Obama aides Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, Dan Pfeiffer, and Tommy Vietor. Following the event itself (which the press release says will occur from 11pm-midnight), the recorded podcast will be available via HBO programming and the partners' streaming platforms on Saturday morning. For more info: www.crooked.com/events...

Party Hearty for Laura: In anticipation of early voting (Oct. 22-Nov. 2), mayoral challenger Laura Morrison is holding an "Early Vote Rally" tonight (Thursday, Oct. 18) at Threadgill's World Headquarters, 301 W. Riverside, 5:30-7:30pm. The campaign promises performances from Leeann Atherton and Sara Hickman, among others. (No admission price, but donations welcome.) The press release also trumpeted Morrison's recent high-profile endorsements from Sarah Weddington (of Roe v. Wade), Council Member Ora Houston, and Travis County Commissioner Margaret Gómez...

Mugging the AG: Yet another distinction for Texas politics and history: Incumbent Attorney General Ken Paxton is the first state official to run for re-election while under indictment. Paxton's Democratic challenger, Justin Nelson, is highlighting Paxton's unique achievement by posting billboards featuring the AG's literal mugshot — for his 2015 grand jury indictment and subsequent arrest on three felony counts, including two counts of fraud. The charges could in theory bring a substantial prison term, but thus far Paxton has managed to delay his trial, seemingly indefinitely. "It's time for a Texas Attorney General who enforces the law," said Nelson, "not one who breaks it. I believe nobody is above the law."...

Gotta Have Friends: The Friends of Austin Neighborhoods has issued its city election endorsements, based on a poll of its 17 member neighborhood associations as well as at-large individual members. The favored candidates and propositions include Mayor Steve Adler; Natasha Harper-Madison (D1); CM Pio Renteria (D3); Rich DePalma (D8); Danielle Skidmore (D9); and "No consensus" for D5, where incumbent Ann Kitchen is unopposed. On the city propositions, FAN supports A, B, C, E, and G (no consensus on D or F), and opposes Prop J... Also issuing candidate endorsements was Bike Austin, and they match FAN's except for D5, where they endorse Kitchen, and D8, with a joint endorsement of DePalma and Bobby Levinski. No mention of the Props...

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