Those are your runoff winners.
Jack Christie’s victory was the most dramatic, coming in his fifth attempt to defeat Jolanda Jones, an opponent he had forced into multiple runoff elections.
Helena Brown was the other candidate who beat an incumbent, defeating Brenda Stardig by a 10 percent margin for the District A seat, according to unofficial county totals.
Both Christie, a 63-year-old chiropractor, and Brown, a 34-year-old political activist, are conservatives.
Brown, whose political history is colored by Tea Party activism, campaigned as an anti-tax, anti-fee candidate. She attacked Stardig for her support of policies backed by Mayor Annise Parker, including an increasingly unpopular drainage fee for $8 billion flood prevention projects.
In the race for At-Large Position 2, Andrew Burks Jr. beat Kristi Thibaut by less than 1 percent.
Jerry Davis, a 38-year-old restaurateur, defeated Alvin Byrd, a 58-year-old constituent services director for current Councilman Jarvis Johnson, by 98 votes to claim the District B seat.
First, congratulations to all the winners. I wish them good luck in office. The city needs everyone’s best, and I hope they all exceed everyone’s expectations.
I’ve made my feelings clear about Andrew Burks, and I’m not going to pretend I’m not disappointed in that result. He led in early voting, but a strong showing on Election Day put Thibaut ahead of him in Harris County. He had enough of a lead in Fort Bend to hang on for the win. For what it’s worth, the result in Fort Bend illustrates what I had said before about Burks’ strength as a candidate compared to Jolanda Jones’:
Candidate Votes Pct
Thibaut 325 32.5
Burks 676 67.5
Christie 75 7.1
Jones 981 92.9
I’ll be very interested to see what the precinct data looks like in each of the At Large races. I hope, though I don’t expect, that I have underestimated Andrew Burks and that he will be a good Council member. But if I haven’t, I hope that candidates who are looking at the 2013 elections will consider that with Christie’s victory there will be only one open At Large seat in two years, that being At Large 3, just as there was only one open At Large seat this year. What do you think will offer better odds of victory, a cattle call open seat race or a challenge to a freshman incumbent like Burks?
The bit in the story about Helena Brown and Renew Houston needs some context. It’s true that Brown rode her opposition to that to victory in District A. However, she was not typical. Jack Christie, who supported Renew Houston, defeated Jolanda Jones, who opposed it. In District B, of the five candidates whom I interviewed, only Jerry Davis supported Renew Houston prior to its passage. Even Andrew Burks says he now supports Renew/Rebuild Houston. In addition to that, all three new Council members who were elected in November supported Renew Houston – Ellen Cohen in C, Mike Laster in J, and Larry Green in K. Point being, District A isn’t the whole city.
Oh, and just for the record, turnout has been unofficially pegged at 56,998 – 55,934 in Harris, 1,063 in Fort Bend, and 1 – yes, one – in Montgomery. That person voted early for Thibaut and Jones. Turnout for the city was a hair over six percent.
That’s all I have for now. On to the March primaries, once SCOTUS cleans up the mess they’ve made of that.