July 16, 2008
The county money report

The Chron's Alan Bernstein rounds up the finance reports for the countywide candidates, and there's some good news and some not-so-good news for both sides.

Democrat Adrian Garcia, the Houston councilman, easily outraised incumbent Tommy Thomas in the race for sheriff in the last few months. But thanks to leftovers from previous campaigns, Thomas ended June with $609,000 in the bank, compared to $112,000 for Garcia.

(Of Thomas' $28,000 raised since February, $20,000 came from lawyer Mark Lanier, homebuilder Bob Perry and wife Doylene Perry. Thomas spent $29,000 on legal fees since late February and made a $5,000 contribution to the University of Houston).

District Clerk Theresa Chang reported $51,000 in her campaign treasury, compared to $9,000 for Democratic challenger Loren Jackson, according to county records.

I'm not too concerned about the District Clerk race. It's always nice to have more money, but as I said before, I don't really expect the candidates in this race to have much effect on the outcome beyond the pull of Presidential turnout. A little something at the margins never hurts, of course.

As for the Sheriff's race, I'd seen an earlier version of this post last night that showed a much smaller total for Adrian Garcia. The updated amount is way better, but we're talking about a two-term City Council incumbent who's running against a guy with a bigger bulls-eye on his back than the Grace Church mega-cross. The ceiling is a lot higher than this, and I hope Garcia picks up the pace. It's hard to imagine him losing, and it's hard (but certainly not impossible) to imagine Thomas running an effective campaign given all his baggage, but let's please not take anything for granted, OK? Thanks.

On the flip side:

Pat Lykos, after her smackdown with Kelly Siegler in the April GOP runoff, has $32,000 in the bank, well behind Democrat C.O. Bradford, with $115,000. (Although, much his take this year was actually the worth of donated services, from campaign accounting to sign placement on private property to office carpet cleaning). Contributions to Bradford included $5,000 from Lee Brown, who was mayor part of the time Bradford was police chief and whose consulting company employs Bradford now.


County Judge Ed Emmett, after a bruising Republican primary against Charles Bacarisse, continues to trail Democratic challenger David Mincberg in the money column. Emmett reported $569,000 on hand, to $713,000 for Mincberg.

Good to see Mincberg continue to do well. Thanks to his expensive primary race, Ed Emmett has less cash on hand now than he did in January. Of course, he spent that money on voter contact and TV ads, so it's not like it was frittered away. I figure we'll start seeing these two on TV soon after Labor Day.

I need to look at the actual report before I can judge Bradford's efforts. He didn't get to run against the bogeyman Chuck Rosenthal, which probably had a dampening effect, but he did announce awhile ago, well before Rosenthal's flameout, so he did have some time to use that to his advantage. I want to know how much actual cash he has, and how much of his total is based on in-kind donations. I'll check it when I can and do an update later.

No word yet on the County Attorney candidates, or for HCDE Trustees. I know Vince Ryan has had at least one fundraiser, but that's about all I know. If he's been working the phones, he could crack $100K. I'll be very pleasantly surprised if that's the case - I expect him to have less than that, probably less than $50K. But he has run for office before, including countywide, so who knows? As for Mike Stafford, I assume he's got some money stashed away from 2004, when he ran unopposed. It could be a big number - $250K or more - if he's been busy and frugal. Or maybe he's been coasting, I don't know. And I've no clue about the HCDE Trustee race. I'll be looking for all this data later today.

UPDATE: To clarify, Bradford raised $250K, including in-kind donations, and has $110K on hand. The report is here (PDF). All things considered, not too bad. For the County Attorney race, Stafford has $50K, Ryan $10K, much less than I thought in each case.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on July 16, 2008 to Election 2008
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.)