Harris County Precinct 3 Commissioner Steve Radack was the featured speaker at the Downtown Houston Pachyderm Club yesterday. He talked about a wide range of subjects but his warning about the November election is the one that stuck with me because I’ve been saying the same thing. We must overcome the weakness of the Harris County Republican Party leadership and the lack of enthusiasm for our presidential nominee. If we don’t, we could very well have a repeat of 2008, a year in which our judges and several county officials were swept out of office.
I was very happy to hear him talk about people that sign up to be a part of the effort and then do nothing, especially since he called out the candidates themselves. I can’t tell you how disappointing it is to have supported a candidate in the primary and then see them doing absolutely nothing to help win in November, riding the coattails of the rest of us. Specifically, the very judicial candidates that are going to LOSE if we don’t convince moderates and independents to vote straight R. About the only time I see them is at this very meeting, which happens to be close to their offices and they can walk down, grab a quick lunch for cheap, and claim they are helping. Nonsense. Get off your butts and get out there and register voters, talk to voters, convince voters to vote for you, and then convince them to vote straight R. Otherwise, all R’s lose.
Everyone had to laugh when Mr. Radack said that one of his favorite things to do is to gas up his car and scream out “Obama, you’re killing me!”. He said everyone thinks he’s insane anyway, so why not? Plus, the reactions of those who are around is priceless. He used his experience as a cop to make his point, saying that he learned that you don’t have to wait for the other guy to hit you, you anticipate it and hit him first. I think I’ll give that one a try.
I couldn’t begin to write about everything he talked about. Toll roads, getting 10 people to vote who then get 10 people to vote who then get 10 people to vote, the importance of voting YES on the Metro ballot item, his agreement that the Harris County Department of Education is a huge waste of money and should be closed down, toll roads and their importance, and the need for a the county to have the ability to levy a sales tax.
It was that last one that bugged me. I hadn’t yet read Patti Hart’s commentary on the subject in the Houston Chronicle or I would have been prepared to ask more questions. We should always be hesitant to give new taxing powers to government but this is Commissioner Radack talking about it, so we need to give him some benefit of the doubt. Not much, but some. I don’t think that Ms. Hart presented the issue correctly. I think that the issue has to do with the City of Houston creating special taxing districts in unincorporated parts of the county and taking revenue and putting it into the city’s general fund. I think that Radack’s point is that IF there is to be a tax in these areas, the revenue should go to the county because the county is responsible for infrastructure in those areas. I think. I’ll have to get back to you on this one.
Another issue I’ll have to get back to you on is the HCRP’s Joint Judicial Campaign, or the unorganized lack of one. I have a call into Jeff Yates to try and get a balanced view of it but right now, judicial candidates are upset that little to nothing is happening on that front. Folks, without a good JJC, we will lose, it is that simple. The party is so disorganized in every other Get Out the Vote effort that the JJC remains the focal point of the campaign. I’ll wait and see if Mr. Yates returns my call before making a judgement on it – perhaps something is in the works.
And last but not least. I asked Michael Kubosh when he was going to run for office. This morning, I get a note from Jason Baldwin to go here. Hmmm.