The Campaign For DA

12.13.2015

Random Thoughts Special Edition: Monday Morning Politics

Texas Republican Party on Left. Me on Right. 
(Muhammad Ali, however, won that fight.)

  • Well, this has been a crazy three days. I went down to Austin on Friday and filed to run for District Attorney for Wise and Jack Counties. I've held that job before. It is my "baby".
  • I filed as a Republican because daddy didn't raise no fool. I didn't think you could be elected in Wise County in any other way. And, plus, I do not consider myself to be a Democrat. I'm Libertarian or Independent. I've said that for years and years. 
  • I went up to the 9th floor office of the Texas Republican Party on 7th Street in Austin (it was like walking into the Death Star with the photos of current statewide elected officials on the wall). I gave the application to a sweet lady, she accepted my $1,250 and the application. I was listed on the Republican Party website as a candidate by the time I drove back home. 
  • Then trouble happened: Also by the time I got home, the Texas Republican Party had already contacted the Wise County Party Head to say there might be a "problem" and left the name and number of an official for me to talk to. The Wise County rep immediately contacted me to provide that information. I thank him for promptly alerting me. And I will thank the Republican Party rep who was available on Saturday, via cell phone, to talk. 
  • The "problem" was the Texas Republican Party was questioning whether I was a (required) "registered voter" in Wise County despite the fact that I was a registered voter in Wise County last week.  The question was whether or not my registration was "effective". Do they screen everyone like this? They gave every indication that they would, and wanted to, keep me off of their ballot. 
  • You know, searching my voter registration status on a late Friday afternoon  was an incredible effort of "vetting me" by an office in Austin which didn't even have a receptionist at the front desk. I had to push a button to get someone to come out. Unless they had been been put on notice that I was coming. 
  • What should happen, and this is important, is that the Texas Republican Party should put me on the ballot and if someone wants to challenge me on "registered voter" or any other issue then so be it. If someone wants to try to kick me off the ballot because they are scared of me, fine. 
  • The filing deadline is Monday. I have every reason to believe the Republican Party of the State of Texas will not put me on their ballot and inform me of that fact after the clock has run out. At that point, I would be left in the desert. Look, I've publicly dogged every Republican at the Austin level for years and/or months. Perry. Abbott. Patrick. Paxton. Willett. Nelson. I've been told that politics is a bare knuckles fight. I now believe it. 
  • Filing for election is bizarre: You don't go through the government. You have to go through the Party. They decide if they want to put you on the ballot and whether there are any "problems."
  • Here are my options: (1) Sit back and hope the Republicans put me on the ballot, (2) Have them not put me on the ballot and sue them over whether I'm qualified to be on the ballot, or (3) Do something else: Withdraw my application and run as an Independent. 
  • Screw 'em. 
  •  I completely understand that running as an Independent is an uphill battle. Then again, times have changed. This is the year of Donald Trump where people are expressing they are sick and tired of the way things have "always been." So am I. 
  • Really, the only difference in running as an Independent is that my name will be next to someone else's name on that ballot in November instead of March.  (There is no primary). It's just that insane straight ticket voting that could kill me. (But, then again, you can vote straight ticket and still vote in a particular individual race. I'll have time to educate them about that.)
  •  If I lose, I lose. And then I'll get up the next day and go to work like I do every day.
  • And now the residency "issue" will not be a problem. It was never a problem if you understood the law.  The dates, however, have now changed. 
  • Look, I may get my butt handed to me for running as an Independent. It's a crazy idea. I understand that. But if I were to win running as a rebel, I've got the political story of the year and maybe in the history of Wise County or maybe even Texas. And I feel better about running as Independent than as a Republican. That is, after all, who I am.  People who care about me know that. 
  • Edit: I'm sending Mrs. LL down to do all of the paperwork in Austin. There are deadlines with lots of technicalities to overcome. She's a little tense about all of it.  But I may have had one of the best moments of my life this morning when I went back up to the bedroom, stuck my head in, and with my best Leslie Nielsen voice said, "Good luck. We are all counting on you."
  • And now I have almost a full year to figure out a way to make it happen. Is this a blessing in disguise?
  • But what do I know? 
  • Worst case scenario: I just put $1,250 filing fee on the Roulette table. I think I'll bet on black.
  • I've done this before. I know what I'm doing. From a 1999 issue of the Wise County Messenger . . . 





Man, everything I said then I feel more strongly about today. (And the only reason I have that article is because my mother, unbeknownst to me at the time, secretly kept a scrapbook for me.)  And I love that second to last paragraph.