Off the Kuff Rotating Header Image

Woodfill wants to pick Eckels’ successor

I noted before that the local GOP is making demands about who Robert Eckels’ successor as County Judge should be. I see now that they are fully prepared to hold their breath till they turn purple if Eckels and company don’t bow to them.

Some Republicans are threatening to withhold future political support for County Judge Robert Eckels unless he backs a high-profile elected official as his successor rather than a relatively obscure former lawmaker.

“This decision is extremely important to whether the base will get behind Eckels if he runs for higher office,” said County GOP Chairman Jared Woodfill.

Although Eckels is stepping down to become a partner in the Fulbright & Jaworski law firm, he has said he eventually may seek statewide office.

Many GOP precinct chairs want Eckels and the Commissioners Court to tap a Republican official already holding countywide office, such as District Clerk Charles Bacarisse or Tax Assessor-Collector Paul Bettencourt, Woodfill said.


Eckels has agreed to discuss the appointment of his successor with the local GOP executive committee, which comprises the county’s 450 precinct chairs, when it meets Monday.

Eversole and Radack also were invited to attend. Radack said he won’t go because the three members of Commissioners Court would create a quorum, possibly constituting an illegal meeting.

Alice Rekeweg, a precinct chair from Kingwood, said some GOP activists are so upset that Eckels appears to be backing [Ed] Emmett as his successor that they would not support the county judge in a run for statewide office.

“It’s a possibility some people will hold a grudge,” she said.

Isn’t that sweet? It’s so nice to know that our next County Judge will either be the result of a crony backroom deal, or a hostage swap for Robert Eckels’ future political considerations. I suppose the good news here is that Steve Radack would probably rather cut off his big toes than make a deal for Eckels’ benefit. I don’t think he’ll allow himself to be out-grudged by a bunch of precinct chairs.

Remember, what Woodfill & Friends are demanding here would mean that more than one countywide office would be held by appointees for the next two years. If it’s Bacarisse who gets tabbed, then two offices for which the last election was this past November will be vacated. Presumably, at that point, we’ll get to hear who’s on their list of Acceptable Replacements for Bacarisse as well. But who cares about all that? It’s an Opportunity, and Opportunity requires Taking Full Advantage. Voters, schmoters.

Funniest quote of the week:

Eckels dismissed that as a concern. “I’m not worried about that at all,” he said. “I’m just going to do what I was elected to do.”

Um, Bob, what you were elected to do was to serve as Harris County Judge through the year 2010. That’s the one thing for sure we know isn’t going to happen. We wouldn’t be having this conversation if you did what you were elected to do instead of heading off on your quest for personal and financial fulfillment. Just FYI.

Related Posts:

  • No Related Posts


  1. Michael says:

    Shelly needs a job, she’s been a congresswoman…

  2. Charles Hixon says:

    Radack said he won’t go because the three members of Commissioners Court would create a quorum, possibly constituting an illegal meeting.

    By Commissioner Radack’s definition of illegal, the most recent Commissioners Court was illegal – with business started and wrapped up before the pubically announced time. If only Radack would practice being a Commissioner as well as he claims to practice law…

  3. Dennis says:

    I’ve never met the man and certainly have no plans to, but Jared Woodfill appears to be “all hat and no cattle”, as the saying goes. I’m sure Eckels is shaking in his boots over the threat Woodfill has suggested.