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Chron overview of the Controller’s race

Must be getting close to Early Voting, as the Chron has started writing about elections other than the Mayor’s race. Here’s their overview of the Controller’s race.

The city controller position traditionally has been a big draw in municipal races. Previous controllers have engaged in high-profile sparring with powerful mayoral administrations and tried, with limited success, to use the office as a stepping stone to brighter political fortunes.

This year, however, may be different, as council members Ronald Green, M.J. Khan and Pam Holm look back over six years at City Hall with little to distinguish themselves from one another in on a generally collegial, unified council. In a year when polls show that many voters know little about the city’s mayoral candidates, the race for Houston’s top fiscal watchdog may have an even tougher time getting people’s attention.

“If the mayor’s race is off the radar screen, the controller race is simply completely lost in the shuffle,” said Robert Stein, a political scientist at Rice University. “They are not running campaigns that are much above yard signs and block walking.”

Maybe my memory’s a little cloudy, but I don’t recall the 2003 race being all that visible beyond yard signs and blockwalking, either. Of course, that year we had a ton of spending in the Mayor’s race, which would have overshadowed if not completely drowned out whatever the Controller candidates were saying. Greg brings some numbers to show that in pretty much every election, the Controller’s race is a distant echo of the Mayor’s race. With the Mayor’s race this year being at a lower volume than usual, the effect is heightened.

In any event, you can see what the candidates have to say for themselves in this story, and you can hear what they have to say for themselves, in plenty of detail, next week in my interviews with them. This is an important race and it deserves much more attention than it’s gotten so far.

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  1. […] know about you, but that gives me a whole other level of insight as to why the latter race is so much lower profile. Fear not, you’ll get to hear all of them speak in much greater detail next week when my […]

  2. […] but with the election a month out and the sum total of the Chron’s non-Mayoral coverage being one story on the Controller’s race, I have to question the priority in doing a piece on three people that no one’s going to vote […]