April 07, 2006
Early voting ends today

Have you voted in the primary runoffs yet? If so, you're one of an elite few in Harris County.

Through Wednesday, 954 Harris County residents had voted in the GOP runoff, down from 3,733 at the same point during the last countywide runoff in 2002, Harris County Clerk Beverly Kaufman said. Democratic turnout through Wednesday was 2,038, compared with 3,580 in 2002.

Runoffs are required to select nominees in races where no candidate received a majority in primaries March 7.

If you voted in a party primary in March, you may vote only in that party's runoff. If you didn't vote March 7 and registered to vote by March 13, you may vote in either party's runoff.

Republicans only have one statewide runoff, for a spot on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Voters in west Harris County also will select a nominee for state House District 133.

Democrats statewide will decide nominees for U.S. senator and lieutenant governor. Locally, some Democratic ballots will include runoffs for the 10th Congressional District in western Harris County and state House District 146 in south Houston.

It's not much better in Travis County. either. I'll say it again - you'll never have more actual effect on the outcome of an election than you do in a low-turnout election. Your vote really counts, so go cast it.

Here's the Chron's take on the Lite Guv runoff between Ben Grant and Maria Alvarado.

Grant, 66, is a former state representative who also served as a district and intermediate appeals court judge. Alvarado, 49, is making her first run.

She served in the Air Force from 1974-80 and in the Texas Air National Guard from 1981-97. She now is a research analyst for health and social issues with the National Veterans Outreach Program.

Grant thinks public schools should be the top priority for state government.

"We should address reform in our school tax system and in our school system. We should obtain and keep qualified and certified classroom teachers in our public schools," he said in an e-mail.

Alvarado says public-school financing and health care for children and the elderly are her priorities. She also thinks tax reform is necessary.

"My personal agenda also is to engage the 10 million registered voters in the state who are not actually voting. They're my target. I'm sure their issues are not very different from mine but until we get them to vote, we don't have a true democracy," Alvarado said.

Both have run grass-roots campaigns, traversing the state to win voters. Grant, an attorney, stresses his decades of public service, while Alvarado said she's an ordinary citizen who wants to help her state.

As a reminder, you can read their statements on the runoff here (Alvarado) and here (Grant).

Posted by Charles Kuffner on April 07, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack

Meanwhile, Hidalgo has 10,000 early and mail votes
and Webb had another 10,000 through Thursday

Based on my polling, looks good for Alvarado. BAR v Kelly depends on how many of the 'undecideds' BAR captured down south unless the major urban areas really come out on Tuesday.

Posted by: George on April 8, 2006 9:48 AM

Based on a larger statewide poll today, strength in those 200 counties no one pays attention to moves Grant a hair ahead of Alvarado.

Posted by: George on April 8, 2006 10:42 PM