April 09, 2006
On the road to Fort Bend

Olivia and I made the drive out to Fort Bend yesterday - in particular, the town of Rosenberg - for the opening of the Fort Bend County Democratic Party's headquarters. The place was packed, and the energy level was as high as I've ever seen at a local Democratic event. Many candidates spoke, many people cheered, and many pictures were taken. I'll refer you to Bryan, Fred (whom I did not get to meet, unfortunately), and Juanita (whom I did, as you can see from Bryan's pics) for those details.

Olivia was a big hit with everyone she encountered. Not that I expected anything less, mind you. How can you resist someone who takes pictures like this? By the way, the reason you can't see her in that pic from Bryan's blog where I'm chatting with Juanita is because she's sitting in a chair nearby. I spent about half of my time there on chase-the-toddler detail, so any moment where her position was fixed and known was one that I took advantage of.

Fort Bend has been trending Democratic for several election cycles now. I've written before how that trend was apparent in the 2004 Presidential race, and now I've compiled some more data in this spreadsheet, comparing the performance in Fort Bend for all statewide races plus CD22 to the state as a whole. The index colum is just a ratio of the FB performance of that party to the state, expressed as a percentage. 2004 was the first year that every Republican statewide candidate did worse in Fort Bend than in Texas overall. I think the key in 2006 is going to be ensuring that Democratic turnout doesn't decline any more than Republican turnout does in a non-Presidential year. Here's a graphical representation of that, for Presidential and non-Presidential cycles:

GOP index in Fort Bend, Presidential years

GOP index in Fort Bend, Non-Presidential years

The low scorer each year, with the exception of 2004 where it was (somewhat surprisingly) George W. Bush, was of course Tom DeLay. The main reason he did better, relatively speaking, in FBC in 2004 than in other years is because he offloaded a bunch of FBC to other candidates in the 2003 redistricting. I've written about that before, too.

The FB Dems have a good slate of candidates running in county races, which I hope will help with that. If you're out there, get to know these folks.

I've got a bunch links for CD22-related stuff piled up to blog about, but I think I'll save those for another post. For now, my thanks to the Fort Bend Dems and especially the Bankston family for showing Olivia and me such a good time yesterday. Let's keep that momentum going through November.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on April 09, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack

Thanks, Kuff. You're welcome to visit us anytime. Olivia, on the other hand, can come live with us.

We've been blockwalking this afternoon, even with exhausted walkers. You saw the energy level yesterday and it's not waning. The idea that we will go six months without a Congressman simply so that Tom DeLay can rule from .... well, where ever he's going - has people livid.

If anyone wants to help us walk and identify voters, contact tony at fortbenddemocrats.org The tide is turning and that's what had the Republicans fists doubled last Thursday.

Posted by: Susan DuQuesnay Bankston on April 9, 2006 4:32 PM

Kuff, sorry I missed you as well. I had to jet out quickly to attend a crawfish bash...you know...priorities. And yes, what a great crowd and you could feel the energy filtering through the air. My three year old Emma would have loved Olivia. We'll make sure to connect before the next function.

Susan, count me in and I am interested in working at the new digs and of the blogger night you mentioned.

Posted by: Fred Villarreal on April 9, 2006 10:06 PM