Runoff Day is today

Hang in there, it’s almost over.

Mayor Sylvester Turner

A nearly year-long mayoral election that culminated in a subdued runoff between Tony Buzbee and incumbent Sylvester Turner comes to an end Saturday when voters decide who wins control over City Hall for the next four years.

Buzbee, a millionaire businessman and trial lawyer, has sought out voters of all political stripes by citing his ties to both parties. For months, he has painted Turner as a corrupt career politician who had run the city into the ground, regularly reminding voters he self-funded his own campaign to avoid the appearance that he is beholden to campaign donors.

Turner, a longtime Democratic state legislator who is finishing his first four-year term, has painted a rosy picture of conditions in Houston, arguing that he has overseen an uptick in the police force and laid the groundwork to diversify the city’s economy through tech and start-up businesses. He also has pitched himself as an astute steward of the city’s finances, pointing to his signature feat: a major overhaul of the city’s costly pension systems.

During the runoff, the two candidates have focused on presenting their plans for the next four years, a marked difference from the general election, when they spent millions of dollars attacking each other. Since Nov. 5, when Turner finished about 19 percentage points ahead of Buzbee, the two have not faced off in a debate, with Turner almost ignoring his foe entirely.

“I think the realization was that Mayor Turner got 47 percent of the vote, and so, if he just didn’t make an embarrassing gaffe or make a wrong move, the election was his to win,” said Michael Adams, chairman of Texas Southern University’s political science department.

See here for the background. I’ve gotten multiple robocalls urging me to vote for Turner (and a few to vote for other candidates, like Raj Salhotra), culminating with one I got on Friday from rightwing radio host Sam Malone on behalf of Tony Buzbee. I finally saw a Buzbee ad on TV a couple days ago – it almost made me nostalgic, it had been so long since I had last seen one. In the meantime, Buzbee has been busy flip flopping on HERO again – what are the odds he could tell you right now what his most recent position on it is? All I know is that as of about 7 PM this evening, I can officially no longer give a shit about anything Tony Buzbee says or does.

Polling locations are here. As a reminder, you can vote at any location. My guess is that more than half of the final vote tally has already happened. I’ll have a report in the morning.

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13 Responses to Runoff Day is today

  1. Djhj says:

    Getting lots of texts from Buzbee invoking Trump. Not only am I not a Trump supporter, I don’t even live in Houston. This just speaks to how much money Buzbee has to burn I guess.

  2. Manny says:

    Why would Buzbee be sending that text to Democrats, it is the Turner campaign behind that, nothing else makes sense.

  3. Djhj says:

    Manny, spoken like a true conspiracy theorist!

  4. Manny says:

    Djhj do you have any proof that it was done by him, the only one spreading conspiracies is you. You are a Democrat, why would the Buzbee campaign send you a Trump endorsement, it is not logical. What benefit would they get. Wake up you are asleep and don’t even know it.

    A campaign would send that to people that have a history of voting in Republican primaries, do you qualify as doing that?

    Turner campaign would send that to Democrats to remind them that Buzbee gave money to Trump and had a fund raiser for him. It is cheap and most people are easily fooled.

    Now explain to me why the Buzbee campaign would be sending you a text that Trump endorsed him. If you claim you are a Republican give your real name so I can look it up. My name is Manuel Barrera

  5. C.L. says:

    When you have to prove you’re not a conspiracy theorist by saying “You are a Democrat, why would the Buzbee campaign send you a Trump endorsement, it is not logical”, and “Now explain to me why…”, well, that pretty much cements the deal that you’re a conspiracy theorist.

  6. Manny says:

    C.L. you don’t make any sense. Did I make an assumption, yes, that he was a Democrat why else would he be complaining about a Trump endorsement. Making logical assumptions does not make it a conspiracy theory.

    Can you explain why Buzbee campaign would be sending texts to Democrats, because most of the people that have posted the Trump endorsement are Democrats, it is all over facebook.

    It is people like you that voted for Trump that are way out in left field.

    I was on a train, I saw the right side of a cow, I can assume that the other side of what I saw is the other side of the cow, that would be a logical assumption.

    What I don’t get is people like you insulting but yet don’t have the backbone to put your real name on the insults. Why do you hide C.L.? Same thing with DjHj, why not use your real names?

  7. Jules says:

    I know of one person who always votes in dem primaries that got the text, but I did read that the Buzee campaign was behind it. Glad he lost.

  8. Manny says:

    Where did you read that Jules, could you provide a link. it was on facebook and twitter being spread.

  9. Djhj says:

    Manny, I don’t think Turner would burn money on sending texts to people that don’t live in the City. I think Buzbee had plenty of money to burn and poor targeting.

  10. Djhj says:

    Manny, I don’t think Turner would burn money on sending texts to people that don’t live in the City.

  11. djhj says:

    “The president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., also did a last-minute robocall for Buzbee, according to audio obtained by The Texas Tribune.”

    this supports my point that Buzbee sent the texts, Manny.

  12. Jules says:

    Manny think it was a chron article pointing to the Tribune article referenced above and was calls not texts.

  13. Manny says:

    djhj this what the Tribune wrote;

    “The president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., also did a last-minute robocall for Buzbee, according to audio obtained by The Texas Tribune.”

    All I can say is, if the Buzbee campaign did that it would be one of the dumbest things I have ever seen a campaign do.

    It does not support the text theory, but it does make it more probable that the Buzbee campaign was run by idiots and it could have happened. Normally stupid stuff is done at the last minute against the opponent not against one’s own campaign.

    djhj I could create something like a text and place it on Facebook, twitter, and other social media and it would probably take off.

    The only thing that could make it make sense is that Buzbee will now become a Trump booster which he had quit being in 2017. Time will tell.

    Either way Turner won, he has been a good Mayor and I expect he will continue to be one. I hope that my next Council Member Pollard is as good as Mike Laster, his will be tough shoes to fill.

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