My last post, too long ago, I dodged endorsements. I had not met all candidates then.
The Standard-Times editorial committee reminds me why there is the old saying, "A camel is a horse designed by a committee".
Starting with SMD 1, Mr Aguirre seems to have that. Banskter has effectively withdrawn, Richardson is not really running and Fleming is about the only candidate I have not met at one of the many forums.
SMD2; the S-T endorsement of Self puzzles me. Yes, I am a long time friend of Jim Turner, but over the last 11-12 years, he has attended more Council meetings than a good number of elected Councilmen. His current knowledge of issues is way past anyone else's. I'm not bashful about speaking to Council when my day job allows it, but Turner could move from the comment podium to the dias seamlessly. I do not recall tripping over Mr. Self at many Council meetings. Turner and I do Capital Improvements meetings, budget meetings, if ANYONE reads that raw data dump the Council Agenda Packet has turned into, it's us. I know damned well Council doesn't read 300- 500 pages of mostly crap. Possible run-off here.
SMD4; Here I part with the Tea Party. Sally has been a consistent spokesperson for an under-represented segment of San Angelo voters. I do NOT see a pinko-leftist conspiracy, I do see people who have done a lot of good, especially in home building and renovations. Sally deserves a seat at the Table.
SMD5: Here I must disclose, I have been both friend and treasurer to Pratt. Her first effort a year ago, she was a rookie, seemed to think a fresh face would carry the day. Whole new world. She has a good grasp of issues, was the first candidate to mention Street Maintenance Sales tax, which other candidates seem to be jumping on like a starving chicken on a fat Junebug. Pratt is better prepared this year and asks advice when she does not know. Pratt is retired early, and it wasn't a Lotto ticket. She offers a 24/7 Councilmember. I see this as a likely runoff in a 4 way race.
SMD6: Two years ago, I think I surprised Farmer by commending her decision to run again. We had had some disagreements, but she competently represented her District by and large. This time I have to go with Don Barnhart. The Tea Party Forum, Farmer dropped the name of "Val Verde" as a possible water source. It had been agreed in Council Executive Session that no one mention that until negotiations were concluded. That mere mention might run up the price. Farmer is odds on favorite, but I have to go with Don.
Mayor: again for disclosure Dwain Morrison is a personal friend and I attend Church with him. He is not the "oldest rat in the Council Barn" for no reason. Dwain has consistently tried to defend the "little" guy against the city staff. Yes, he has often been the only dissenter, but I view it that he is trying to manage City money as carefully as he does his own. If we get fat on the oil boom, maybe we talk about a river fountain then. Meantime, I want good streets, good pipes, maybe even moving down in our property tax ratings statewide! What a concept. I have already voted for Dwain because he shares those basics. Might get a runoff here.
The turnout for early election has been, oh disssapointing would be an understatement. Now I chewed out Shoemaker for her DOJ election suit on details, BUT one point I totally agree with: Voters should vote in the same polling place in May as they vote in November. You have them jumping from one foot to the other every 6 months, it's hard enough to get 20% when voters knew where to vote. Of course the result has been to supress the vote!
If we are very lucky and a lot of voters stir off their buns, we might, I stress MIGHT see 10,000+ votes, about 20%, and that's 20% of registered voters, not the 95,000 residents.
I confess, I am a lifelong political junkie, and I don't expect all voters to be that wrapped up in an election.
Saturday is the deal. Last chance. Even if your candidate loses, voting is your license to bitch about it. You don't bother to vote, don't even tell me about it next year.