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More on Ray Jones’ ballot suit

City Council hopeful Ray Jones speaks out about his attempt to get on the ballot for the City Council special election.

He contends that city officials denied his notarized application because he left an oath section blank while other candidates with mistakes on their forms were approved.

In a petition to the 14th Court of Appeals on Thursday, Jones’ attorney, Richard Leach, also suggested that his client’s advocacy on behalf of the disabled in conflict with the city may have played a role.

His daughter, Kristen Jones, who is disabled, recently won a federal court case against Mayor Bill White and the city in which the judge required that dozens of curbs be fixed or rebuilt to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Jones also said he has appeared before the council and other groups to complain about White’s policies on mobility and parking.

“It appears that, if you’re favorable to the city, then the city will allow you to run,” Leach said. “If the city doesn’t like you, as in the case of Ray Jones, then it doesn’t allow you to run.”

One section of Leach’s petition, filed with a request to stop the election until the matter is decided, uses stronger language: “Why does Mayor White hate Ray Jones?”

The writ is here (Word Doc). It’s interesting reading, that’s for sure.

Jones’ attorney also raises concerns about the amount of time Jones was given to correct his error. He said the City Charter allows candidates until midnight, not 5 p.m., to file applications. That provision, however, is superseded by the Texas Election Code, which requires the earlier time.

I have more on the subject of timing at Kuff’s World. I will say this, however. Ray Jones ran for the open District C seat in 2005. Here are the results (PDF) from that race:

COUNCIL MEMBER, DISTRICT C Candidate Votes Pct ============================= JUDY SIVERSON 1,543 6.24 MARK LEE 4,553 18.40 GEORGE HITTNER 4,912 19.86 ANNE CLUTTERBUCK 4,954 20.03 BRIAN CWEREN 3,509 14.18 HERMAN LITT 4,317 17.45 RAY JONES 950 3.84

With all due respect to Ray Jones, it’s not clear to me why Mayor White would be concerned about his odds of winning. If for whatever the reason Mayor White did not want Jones on Council – and I’m not saying there is a reason, I’m just presenting a hypothetical – why would he feel the need to go out on a limb and take overt action to prevent him from getting on the ballot? I can’t see it.

Be that as it may, Jones has emailed me to say that the 14th Court of Appeals has demanded a response from the city by Monday at 2 PM. We’ll see what happens next.

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