November 19, 2007
Richard Morrison for Fort Bend County Commissioner

Here's some good news: Richard Morrison, the man whose run against Tom DeLay in 2004 marked the beginning of the end of the Hammer's career, is running for County Commissioner in Precinct 1 in Fort Bend. His opponent is incumbent Commissioner Tom Stavinoha, and the main issue is a toll road.

Morrison said he'd been contemplating a run, and then made up his mind a few weeks ago at a citizens' meeting on TxDOT's proposal to turn so-called Section C of the Grand Parkway into a toll road, on a route that runs close to Greatwood (where Morrison lives), Bridlewood and other area communities.

Morrison said Stavinoha attended the meeting, but instead of getting up on stage with state and local officials, he sat quietly in the audience. And while hundreds of residents in attendance voiced their strenuous disapproval of the toll road proposal, Morrison said Stavinoha told him he favors it.

"I went up there afterwards and said 'Tom, you better change your position on this toll road," Morrison recalled. "I said, 'you're not going to get six votes in Greatwood.'"

"Everyone in Briarwood and Greatwood is furious about this toll road," Morrison told Democrat club members. "How can they trust their commissioner to do anything, because he may have taken a contribution from a road-builder, and now he's sitting in the audience. You've got to take a stand for these people."

Another issue that has strengthened his resolve to run, Morrison said, is "the fact that Tom and the whole commission supports this I-69 corridor coming through Fort Bend County - that's the most ridiculous thing." Building the corridor in the midst of Fort Bend's suburban neighborhoods will be an invitation for industrial development, he added.

I thought toll roads (in particular, the Trans Texas Corridor) were going to be a real issue in the 2006 elections, but outside of State Rep. Mike Krusee's near-loss, it's hard to say there was much impact. Most of the candidates running on toll road opposition were poorly funded, so maybe it's too early to judge the potency of the issue. This feels like a different situation, as it's more local and not really a partisan matter per se. We'll see. What I know for sure is that Morrison's return to the political stage is a welcome sight, and that he'll bring a lot of energy and dedication to the job. I look forward to seeing more from his campaign. Go get 'em, Richard! Muse has more.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on November 19, 2007 to Election 2008

Great! Where's his campaign website? I have some money and time I'm itching to donate.

Posted by: tbyg on November 20, 2007 5:20 PM