October 04, 2008
Endorsement watch: The DMN on the CCA

In my Guess the Chron endorsements post, I wrote that "Any respectable Democratic candidate running for the CCA, a/k/a "Texas' Worst Court", should expect to receive an endorsement." The Morning News comes through for me on that:

Susan Strawn in Place 3

Judge Tom Price has spent more than three decades in office - both in Dallas County and now in Austin. And for years, questions about the Richardson Republican's work ethic have persisted. Unfortunately, Judge Price, 63, has not learned from past mistakes. His absences continue to accumulate, and his reputation continues to deteriorate.

Many in the legal community have pointed to his haughty temperament and outward hostility as cause for concern. But even more dismaying, they say, is the amount of time his office sits empty. This court - and all of Texas - deserves better.

Democratic challenger Susan Strawn fits the bill. The Houston lawyer, who also teaches at the University of Houston Law Center, recognizes the court's shortcomings and offers innovative ideas for improvement. She strikes us as smart, measured, hard working and insightful.

While Ms. Strawn, 46, doesn't have bench experience, she has gained a strong understanding of the law through her work as a federal prosecutor. Her legal work for the federal government also has taken her to Kosovo and West Africa, where she wrote criminal procedure codes.

Judge Price has been quick to point the finger, laying blame for this court's deficiencies at his colleagues' feet while ducking responsibility. Ms. Strawn, though, is prepared to make needed changes on the court. She gets our recommendation.

Hopefully, that will be the first of many such endorsements for Strawn. Also as expected, JR Molina failed to respond to the DMN's requests for information, so they gave no endorsement in the Place 4 race. I have fond hopes for the Democrats putting up three real candidates for the CCA in 2010, and again in 2012 when Sharon Keller is on the ballot. For now, at least we have one.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on October 04, 2008 to Election 2008
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