There were plenty of lowlights too, but we're not going to moan about those here.
Mainly, I just wanted to report on the results of the voting from last weekend's Annual State Meeting of the Green Party of Texas. The biggest news of all for Texas Greens is that the Annual Meeting split into two meetings during odd-numbered years like this one. Expect a second meeting in October or November, at which time there will be opportunities to vote on some bylaw amendments that need to be reworked to the satisfaction of two-thirds of the delegates.
I should also mention one of the oddities of this meeting: the complete lack of delegates from Bexar County. San Antonio Greenies made a might contribution to last April's nominating convention, including their two candidates for seats in the State Legislature. Bexar County's chapter is still active (although not listed on the txgreens.org site for reasons I cannot guess) and Tweeting regularly.
State Executive Committee
Co-chair Laura Palmer and the Treasurer Travis Christal will continue in office until the 2022 state convention. These members were elected or re-elected Saturday (26 June) by approval voting, with their home counties in parentheses:
Xander and Kisha are fairly new arrivals to GPTX. Kisha and some other Galveston County residents will have an opportunity to reanimate the Gavleston County Green Party in the coming year, should they choose to accept the mission.
National Committee Delegates
The following ten folks will represent Texas on the Green Party US's National Committee, having received the ten highest numbers of approvals:
Yes, it is not only permitted but fairly common for members to have seats on both the SEC and the NC. There are also two alternates in the event that one of the ten must vacate: Alán Alán Apurim and Bernadine Williams.
Approved by 2/3 majority:
Rejected or Tabled:
These may be brought up for reconsideration in the Fall 2021 GPTX meeting.
Platform Amendments and Resolutions
These I will definitely discuss in a later post. The good news is that all the proposed platform amendments were accepted by a majority of the delegates, irrespective of their disagreements on other matters.
At least Laura Palmer is optimistic. The GPTX co-chair said last night in a Green Party Houston Zoom conference that she is interpreting as good news the Secretary of State's Office's reply to the list of electoral nominees that she filed. If there's any truly good news, it's that SOS did not remark in this reply that the candidates who had not paid filing fees would not be granted official candidate status.
I don't see how SOS could avoid enforcing the statutory fee or petition requirements for minor-party candidates as set forth in last year's HB 2504. We still have to wait for the outcome of the pending lawsuits to see whether SOS can waive those fees legally and without major parties throwing a major hissy fit. We have made it a matter of public record that only two of the eight nominees ponied up to run for office, those being Hal J. Ridley, Jr. (US House District 36) and Brody Mulligan (Texas House District 92).
As of now, it's a little less unofficial that GPTX has three statewide nominees in addition to the presidential ticket. We'd certainly feel better if all nine million or so who vote in the general election have more Green choices than just the top of the ticket, rather than the 150,000 or so in Ridley's and Mulligan's districts.
The Green nominee for US Senate, yours sincerely, may begin doing something like campaigning soon. It will be a very low-key effort. As I told Laura, as much as I'd love to travel the state as I did in 2012, the current pandemic makes that impractical; making a lot of noise on the Internet seems to be the only way to go, but there's so much other noise competing for voters' attention.
The watchword for now is "wait & see."
In last night's online meeting of the State Executive Committee of the Green Party of Texas, state co-chair Laura Palmer revealed that the Secretary of State's Office had some questions about katija gruene's occupying two places on the 2020 general election ballot. As a result, ms. gruene decided to stay in the statewide race for the Railroad Commission seat and drop out of the Texas House District 51 race.
The Texas Election Code does not state explicitly that one person cannot run for more than one office in the same election—or, at least, I have not found such language. However, no one person may serve in two elected offices in the event of winning both races. Hypothetically, if gruene could be elected to both positions in the event of a sudden Green Wave, she should not take a chance on a dual victory.
Possibly Moot Point
This is the paragraph where we remind readers that gruene is not officially on the ballot for either position, despite being nominated for both. She did not pay the new HB 2504 filing fees to run, nor did she submit petition signatures in lieu of the fees. The fee provision for candidates irrespective of party is in legal limbo, pending the lawsuits filed in hopes of overturning it.
Not gonna lie: It could have gone better. But it could also have gone a lot worse. I'm happy with the process and results, despite some bumps. I'm happy to get a chance, however virtual, to see old comrades and meet some relatively new ones.
We had about 32 delegates, representing eight Texas counties, show up at the Green Party of Texas's first-ever online convention. We also had a lurker to two. Among the best news that I can report is that personalities that have clashed at past state meetings remained not just civil but amicable to each other and the rest of the delegates.
The 2020 Green Party of Texas Annual State Meeting and Nominating Convention will happen Saturday 18 April at 9 am. You will not need to worry about arranging travel and lodging to attend: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it will be a video conference. Other parties' conventions have also received dispensation from the Secretary of State's Office to have their conventions online.
The actual site of the convention will be at an apartment complex in Austin. Delegates can attend via Zoom. GPTX strongly recommends registering via the event on the txgreens.org Calendar. That's the only way to receive notification of the Zoom Meeting ID and password.
These state conventions normally spread out over two days, but the plan is to fit everything into Saturday between 9 am and 3 pm. The somewhat abbreviated agenda will include some of the usual highlights:
The statewide candidates are Charles Waterbury for Supreme Court Position 1, katija gruene for Railroad Commission, and David B. Collins for US Senate.
Diane Wood, a longtime member in Tarrant County, has announced that she will nominate herself for the position of co-chair. There was some worry about whether a candidate for state co-chair could even be appointed, since no members filed to run last December along with the candidates for public offices. The Secretary of State's Office has confirmed that this provision applies to the primary-nominating parties and is not a problem for convention-nominating parties such as the Greens and Libertarians.
Just wanted to keep this announcement short and tidy. Look for follow-ups with more information in the next few days.
We got our Internet connection fixed this morning, after three or four days of spotty-to-nonexistent service. Sadly, it required switching from a locally-owned provider, Phonoscope, to the AT&T Death Star. (Our complex allows only those options.) So now the story of the past weekend's Green Party district conventions can be uploaded for the world to see.
Janis Richards and I did make the trip to Nokturne in Clear Lake Saturday to meet up with Hal J. Ridley, Jr., as planned. Some folks advised against it. Nokturne itself was not even open for pickup and delivery, with weekend hours shifted to 5-11 pm. We got all the necessary paperwork signed; as a bonus, Ridley and his guitar provided some music.
Despite our efforts, GPTX was able to arrange a consolidated district convention via a Zoom conference Saturday evening. We confirmed the nominations of Ridley in Congressional District 36 and two other candidates in multi-county district races. It was also revealed that three of our candidates did not win enough support to gain nomination, and two of those three actually paid their filing fees.
Per Green Party of Texas co-chair Alfred Molison, two people have filed to run as Green candidates in 2020 and accompanied their applications with the requisite fees. Neither of the paying candidates has applied to run in a statewide race, although eight Green presidential candidates have filed in Texas. Despite rumors that Charles Waterbury would make another run for Supreme Court, he is not among those listed as having filed.
Those Who Paid
Golden Triangle hellraiser Hal Ridley, Jr., will make his third run for Congress from House District 36, which extends from eastern Harris County to the Louisiana line and up into the Piney Woods a few counties. Democrat Rashad Lewis has also filed to run for the extremely safe seat that Republican Brian Babin, D.D.S., currently occupies.
In Texas House District 92, northeastern Tarrant County, Brody Mulligan has filed to run for that seat. Incumbent Jonathan Stickland is not seeking re-election; he also is not seeking higher office. Two Republicans and three Democrats are contending for the nominations of their respective parties.
The other prospective Green candidates have filed in hopes of the pending lawsuit succeeding in overturning the fee requirements imposed by HR 2504. Keep in mind that this may not be a complete list, although it does include two instance kat gruene. Longtime Greenie gruene has not been active with GPTX for a while, pursuing other projects, but she has filed for a statewide position and a districted position, both without paying a fee.
To see where the various legislative districts lie, see the District Viewer site for Texas House, Senate, and State Board of Education.
David B. Collins
US House of Representatives
Alfred Molison District 8
Tommy Wakely District 21
katija "kat" gruene for Texas Railroad Commissioner
Debbie Russell for State Board of Education, District 5
Texas State Senate
Corey Bowers, District 9
Texas State House of Representatives
Dan Lyon, District 45
katija "kat" gruene, District 51
Forest Hampton, District 66
Kashif Riaz, District 67
Jamar Osborne, District 103 (I hope he hasn't also filed with the Libertarian Party this time.)
Antonio Padron, District 119
Blogging Sporadically since 2014
Here you will find political campaign-related entries, as well as some about my literature, Houston underground arts, peace & justice, urban cycling, soccer, alt-religion, and other topics.