September 05, 2008
More on Bell's lawsuit

Here's the Chron story on Chris Bell's lawsuit to remove the mysterious Stephanie Simmons from the ballot in SD17. The main takewaway is this:

Bell sued the Texas secretary of state and Simmons. He argues that Simmons doesn't meet the Senate's residency requirements. Senators must reside in the districts from which they are elected for at least one year, and he claims she has not met that requirement.

He said the secretary of state, a Republican appointee, immediately certified the ballot, cutting off any administrative appeal.

The secretary of state's office declined to comment, and efforts to reach Simmons were unsuccessful.

It's now been a week since the filing deadline, and as far as I can tell nobody has been able to reach Stephanie Simmons for a comment. That just ain't right. I really don't know what else to say about that.

I should note, by the way, that I haven't mentioned the Kim Brimer lawsuits before now because I figured any idiot could see a distinction between an incumbent who filed (or had surrogates file) multiple lawsuits and pursued multiple appeals over the course of several months, and a candidate who's filed one suit because he didn't have the opportunity to pursue an administrative appeal with the Secretary of State because the filing he's challenged came in and was certified right at the deadline. But it seems I misunderestimated about that. Bell is of course taking a risk by filing this suit, and if he loses he'll have to deal with how his action is perceived. I said the same about Brimer when he filed his latest lawsuit, before it got tossed and he kept right on going. If Bell follows that path, he'll look bad, too. Most likely, the clock would run out on him before he could get that far anyway. Texas Politics has more.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on September 05, 2008 to Election 2008

Perception is all in politics which for some reason some candidates simply don't understand.

Posted by: Baby Snooks on September 5, 2008 7:41 PM

Texas courts have often been lenient on residency requirements. I heard talk that maybe going after filing a false statement might have been a better Bell strategy.

Posted by: Gary Denton on September 5, 2008 8:29 PM

The real problem is her claiming to have been a resident of Ft. Bend County while continuing to vote in Harris County. Unless I'm mistaken, she can be prosecuted over that. I suspect even Roy Minton will have a problem explaining that to a court. The court may not be so lenient with regard to that matter.

You have to wonder if anyone would have paid much attention to her had Chris Bell not made an issue of it but I suspect she intended to run a campaign. She has some money somewhere, either her own or someone else's, in order to have been able to afford Roy Minton.

Posted by: Baby Snooks on September 5, 2008 11:29 PM
Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)