Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Houston Bar Association Judicial Candidate Poll

The Houston Bar Association released its Judicial Candidate Qualification Poll today. You can check them out for yourself here.

Those attorneys who took the poll were given four options of rating the candidates:
-Not Rated
-Not Qualified
-Qualified; OR
-Well Qualified

To me, the results weren't surprising.

Although you can read them for yourself, I thought it was worth noting a couple of things:

-180th District Court Candidate Danny Dexter had 220 voters say he was "Not Qualified", while 57 said he was "Qualified" and 56 said he was "Well Qualified". I understand that Danny has been trying to play off his bad evaluations on the campaign trail by saying he just wasn't "popular". Actually, Danny was fairly popular at the Office. He just wasn't good at his job. This poll result shows that.

-by contrast, 180th District Court Candidate Marc Brown had only 108 voters say he was "Not Qualified" (hmm, anybody else notice that's right around the same number of total voters that thought Danny Dexter was?), with 86 voters labeling him as "Qualified" and 266 saying he was "Well Qualified".

-former Civil Court Judge Sharolyn Wood seems to have a polarizing effect, having gotten more votes in general than most other candidates. That's directly attributable to the fact that more civil attorneys vote in this Bar Poll than criminal attorneys. The good news for Wood? She got 277 votes for "Well Qualified". The bad news? She got 671 saying she wasn't. Cary Hart's numbers put her in second place on the "Well Qualified" front, and she had the least number of "Not Qualified" votes.

-in the County Court at Law # 4 race, former Judge Janice Law had 436 attorneys say she was "Not Qualified", as opposed to 73 saying she was "Qualified" and 42 saying she was "Well Qualified". I don't know of anyone who would actually say she was "Well Qualified" other than Gary Polland who inexplicably co-endorsed her in his mail out this week. Good Lord, Gary, what were you thinking?

-and finally, Rachel Palmer took a big hit on the "Not Qualified" portion of the test, getting 193 votes (more than any other candidate from either party) and only got 93 "Well Qualified" votes.

-Don Smyth, on the other hand, received only 129 votes for "Not Qualified" (which is the least of any candidate in the race from either party), and 227 votes for "Well Qualified" (the most from either party).

At least the lawyers seem to be getting it right when gauging the Judicial Elections. One can only hope that the voters will follow suit.


Anonymous said...

I am also perplexed that Ms. Law got even one qualified or well qualified vote. Why would Gary Polland want her as an embarassment to the Republicans on the bench again? Has he forgotten about how nutty she was? Also, I sure do wish some of the people handing out endorsements had the benefit of these polls before they made their decisions. Oh that's right, those endorsements are for sale.

Aggie Pct Chair said...

Gary Polland is just another embarrassment to the Republican party. Woodfill isn't far behind. I know I go overboard but guys like him hurt us. Lowery is right there with him frankly. I read Black Ink's piece on this and I couldn't agree more after thinking about it.

Anonymous said...

The Houston Bar Association (HBA) poll could or would be more valuable in evaluating the qualifications of the various judicial candidates if there was greater participation of the HBA members in the poll. Looking at the raw numbers, however, the participation rate appears to be about ten percent. One can do wondrous things though statistically with numbers. The campaign literature from the likes of Wood, Palmer, Law, Dexter, and Law as they massage their poll numbers in the next few weeks with the assistance of the "party" will be entertaining and instructive as they spin the Blue Hairs. Moreover,those purveyors of endorsements will have a fertile source of livelihood.

Anonymous said...

BOTTOM LINE: This "Poll" has more members who DO NOT practice Criminal Law. Just look at the "not rated" numbers for the criminal races.

The only thing the H.B.A. poll is good for is to expose the extreme negative candidates.

Generally, any CRIMINAL Judge who "on paper" just seems to run away with an amazingly high positive rating from this disproportionally civil attorney professional organization could just mean they "POLITIC" better and aren't necessarily better judges.

I heard Rosenthal paid for the ADA's to be members of the HBA which is a good thing. Don't know that is still the case with current budget cuts. I have nothing to base this on but would imagine that any criminal lawyer is more likely to be a member of the HCCLA than HBA.

To me THIS Organization and the prosecutors should be the ones giving a true rating for the general public to follow. Otherwise, again, except for the extreme negatively rated candidates, this is basically an ass kissing contest IE: "Hey I'm a criminal judge attending every HBA "Civil" golf tournament, conference, or otherwise civil based gender or racial organization's function and because of this AND ONLY THIS - then these otherwise ignorant civil lawyers will recognize the candidate's name and vote for them EVEN THOUGH they have never set foot in that person's court or tried a case with them.

I mean really, one particular candidate actually reads these numbers to reaffirm to himself that he truly IS "the fairest Maiden in all the LAND".

Anonymous said...

APC, remember you elected your embarrassments, Gary Polland is your man, Woodfill is your man, Lowery is your man, Hotze is your man. Your party is the party of total corruption and good old boy networking. (Not even going to address Lykos putting her incompetent cronies on tax payer payroll) List all of Dexter's endorsements, list all of Palmer's endorsements, Laws endorsement, they all belong to you. Makes you proud doesn't it.

Anonymous said...

Lots of interesting votes on the civil side. First of all, this should not be seen as indicative of how the races will turn out. Only if the margins are razor thin will the lawyers who vote in these things have enough pull to sway the results. Still, the results show that if the Democrats can turn out the numbers, they may have an impact on the down-ballot races. I bet things stay pretty much the way they are though.

Wood isn't really polarizing. Republicans like APC support her just because of her party. People who practice in front of her know she's incompetent.

APC, many in the Republican elite like Woodfill. I'm surprised you're not brown nosing by agreeing with them. It would actually give me some respect for you, except I'm sure you don't like him because he's not "Republican enough." More party loyalty over substance for you.


Aggie Pct Chair said...

Anon 10 34,

Nope. I helped run Pollan off and am trying to dot he same with Woodfill. I do support Hotzze but he like Lowery, is what he has made himself. Those two weren't elected. Duh

David Jennings said...

If you really, really want a fun read, check out Janice Law's three part "story" about her meeting with Steven Hotze. Bizarro.

Anonymous said...


Three silly words for you: Sheila Jackson Lee

Anonymous said...

APC, I know those two were not elected but they are prominent members of your party, they represent your party. Rosenthal, elected by your party. The list could go one forever. I have read your comments and they prove one thing, you are a mindless minion who will never be anything but totally loyal to the Republican party above any loyalty. You have spelled out your position well, you would vote Republican if the devil himself had an R by his name. Don't try to hide what you are. I have also read your posts on Stealth, a Harvard Law graduate and editor of the Harvard Law Review in a perfect world would be looking for handouts? What do you have hanging in your closet? It is not hidden very well.

Anonymous said...

No single party can claim corruption as its own. There are also honest folks on both sides. Those people, regardless of which party they subscribe to, could do great things if they banded together and dispensed with the name calling.

Anonymous said...

WOW..somehow ther are 34 lawyers that think Lloyd Oliver is "well qualified" to sit on a judical bench..Thats scary

Anonymous said...

I just noticed something interesting in my "Official Republican Voter's Guide"...Rachel Palmer's campaign treasurer is Jackelyn Iloff. Is she related to another famous Iloff whom we now know as Victoria Iloff Osteen?? If so, didn't Rusty Hardin represent the Osteens when they were sued several years ago by the Continental flight attendant?? And now Rusty endoreses Rachel. Hmmm...Makes you wonder. Small world?

Anonymous said...

Dexter could not buy the bar poll like he did everything else. He got more not qualified votes than any criminal district court candidate from either party. Look for the Dems to make him a poster boy of bad judicial candidates.
"Worst rated" "fired from the D.A.'s Office" . He will be a real drag on the ticket. Too bad he is going to win.

Anonymous said...

I have read Janice Law's 3 part "story" I think she is in the race just to collect information for her next book. I would be careful about speaking to Janice, she may be recording everything you say to use it in her book.

Aggie Pct Chair said...

Anon 7 40 am,

I believe democrats to the core look for government handouts. Insinuating I am a racist is low class and ignorant. For you to somehow link that comment to race shows your predisposition to racism. You, a democrat, support handouts.

Anonymous said...

looks like the dems did well. they won only 2 in last year's qualifications poll. by my count, they won 18 in this poll.

Anonymous said...

APC, this Democrat could buy and sell your sorry ass.

And the Republicans I know are for giving handouts to corporations, helping them evade taxes and liability. If I were to support handouts, which I don't, I'd rather give a handout to a person in need than a corporation padding its numbers.

Jesus would want it that way, don't you think? Or does religion only play a part when it's convenient? Some Christian you are.

Anonymous said...

APC, I have re-read you comment in Stealth and it does not mention democrats seeking handouts, no, no it says "In an ideal world, Hussein Obama would be looking for handouts and not our President." You could not even use the President's first name. Why? You indicate you feel a Harvard educated Law Review editor should be looking for handouts and not be the President. You offer no observations as to policies you disagree with. You offer no observation of conduct that would call for your comment. So why would would make a statement that seems to indicate you would have the first black President of the United States standing on street corners asking for handouts? You, sir, made the comment, You, sir, have to live with the comment.

Aggie Pct Chair said...

I also refer to Clinton as Slick Willy, thoughts?

And to the person who offered to buy and sell me, you might want to spend some money on your party because they aren't doing so well.