Monday, February 11, 2019

The 2020 Race for District Attorney Heats Up, Already

Houston Chronicle reporter Zach Despart sent out a Tweet this evening that has Harris County prosecutors abuzz:


Despart noted that attorney Audia Jones has filed a Notice of Treasurer in the 2020 race for District Attorney.  Jones, who recently left the Harris County District Attorney's Office, has been very vocal on her Facebook page about her vision for the Criminal Justice System.  Her posts have also been critical of the D.A.'s Office's current administration.

Jones is married to 180th District Court Judge DaSean Jones, who just took office on January 1st of this year.  In the event that Jones were to win the race for District Attorney, there would probably be some question as to whether or not her husband could preside over cases prosecuted by the District Attorney's Office.  In all honesty, I'm not sure what the answer to that question would be.

While Audia Jones is the first one to definitely throw her hat in the ring to run for District Attorney (I'm not sure that Kim Ogg has even formally announced that she is running again), there have been rumors that former prosecutor Rachel Palmer Hooper is mulling over a run as the Republican candidate.  That's largely based on this Tweet from last month:


Rachel is sounding like somebody who is getting ready to make a run.  She's been in the Civil World for some time now, but who knows?  Maybe she misses the excitement of the Criminal Justice System.

Quite frankly, I think that any candidate running for Harris County D.A. as a Republican in 2020 is just throwing his or her money in the toilet.  After the bashing that Republicans took in 2018, that's going to be a fool's errand if Trump is still at the top of the ballot in 2020.  Although straight-ticket voting is (fortunately) now a thing of the past in Texas, I don't know if the change will be enough to make up those margins.  I expect that the "protest turnout" of voters who show up just to vote against Trump will remain extremely high and that doesn't bode well for any candidate running as an R in 2020.

On the plus side, I think that most smart candidates know this.  I'm expecting a pretty quiet Republican Primary.  Hopefully, it will be so quiet that no one will feel all that compelled to "buy ads" from sleazy Slate producers like Terry Lowry and Steven Hotze. 

I think that if anyone has a chance to win as a Republican candidate for District Attorney in 2020, it would need to be someone that would appeal to Latino and Latina voters.  The Republican Party has been rather alienating to those voters in the Trump Era and if the Republicans were smart, they would start trying to build some bridges to that community instead of burning them.  A charismatic, qualified, and experienced Latina candidate would be ideal in that situation, and if I were leading the Harris County Republican Party, I would be working overtime to recruit someone that matched that description.

But where could they ever find a candidate like that?


Stay tuned, folks.  2020 is already getting interesting.


22 comments:

Anonymous said...

https://goo.gl/images/a7E6kX

Murray Newman said...

Elsa Alcala would also be an excellent choice.

Anonymous said...

Ogg has never been a true progressive prosecutor. And she hired a bunch of nitwits with no management experience who are doing the job just long enough to vest or for their own personal aggrandizement or sadistic pleasure (Joanne) or some combination of all three. There's been no rigorous thought or study about how to make that office better for anyone but themselves. I'm delighted she's already drawn at least one primary opponent. I hope she draws more-and they should worry her.

And while I agree with Murray about throwing good money after bad, I hope the Republicans put up a good fight with an experienced, diverse candidate. The people of Harris County -prosecutors, victims, defendants, officers, even defense attorneys (they're people too) -deserve better than the snake oil that Ogg sold them in 2016.

Anonymous said...

Agreed V V would be a great DA. She will never win the Republican primary. Remember, the Republican primary in 2008 gave us Pat Lykos instead of Kelly Siegler. People will always seek the favor of Hotze, Lowry and Polland. The wing nuts of both parties pick the nominees.

OMG why would Rachel put herself through another losing election. Since her run for Court 13 in 2010, she has taken the 5th and been written up in the Chron for letting a serial rapist plead to back time without talking to the cops or the victim! Plus there will be all of that sordid history about Don that anyone can get from the District Clerk's website about his old child support garnishment by his ex-wife and his failure to pay child support for his illegitimate daughter. It's not like she has any old friends from the office who will rally to her support except Pat and Jim. Oh well, good luck with that. If it were me I would keep my cushy civil job.

Elsa would have to run as a D as liberal as she has become. Maybe she will challenge Kimbra in the primary. Looks like a bloody fight brewing.

Pass the popcorn or the vodka.

Anonymous said...

Judge Marc Carter would also be a strong candidate for the R’s

Anonymous said...

Maybe Belinda Hill would like to take a shot at it? She would be the most qualified person named so far and a great choice.

Having seen the devastation Ogg's initial bloodbath caused and the fallout of her management team's ineptness since, I'm convinced the so-called manpower shortage the office is facing is due to all the rookies who are convinced they have no discretion and lack the understanding of the job to do the right thing. After all, with all the programs to reduce the need for as many prosecutors, asking for more of them is going to be hard to sell to anyone these days. Enjoy the crow, Kim!

Anonymous said...

Vanessa Velasquez would be an excellent Harris County D.A.

Greg Gilleland

Anonymous said...

Marc Carter would also make an excellent DA and like Vanessa, is a person
of great integrity. Vanessa's reputation as a prosecutor and judge are above reproach,
as is that of Marc as a prosecutor, defense attorney and Judge.

Greg GIlleland

Lee said...

In comparing apples to apples, Kim Ogg has maintained the best stability given the circumstances. Lined up against her predecessors, she is the best that we have had in a long time. Sometimes she can be slow to come around to the right choice or completely embrace modern justice reform but she is a step forward. B+

Lee said...

In comparing apples to apples, Kim Ogg has maintained the best stability given the circumstances. Lined up against her predecessors, she is the best that we have had in a long time. Sometimes she can be slow to come around to the right choice or completely embrace modern justice reform but she is a step forward. B+

Anonymous said...

“B+“? Wow! That’s a mighty generous curve there Lee. When you say “given the circumstances,” do you mean “given that she either fired or ran off 95 % of those with the slightest notion of how to run a prosecutor’s office? Hope you or a loved one never has to rely on a Harris County prosecutor any time in the future .

Anonymous said...

95%?? A bit dramatic.

Anonymous said...

Lee's assessment of Ms. Ogg's performance does seem rather generous but she did not run off all or 95% of the qualified prosecutors, just the bulk of experienced kind we really need to clear up the resulting backlog.

Anonymous said...

The only thing stopping the clear up of the backlog is Joanne Musick.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, Marc Carter would be real strong...for about a minute. https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Former-HISD-officer-admits-to-fondling-middle-11170371.php

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:26, that looks like the State offered deferred to me. That is not enough to DQ a former Judge as a DA candidate.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe Carter would sign off on a plea that excluded this defendant from the SOR. All the rest is fairly common if the victim was unwilling to testify or there were other evidentiary issues.

Anonymous said...

9:33 The State dismissed the indecency cases and plead the defendant on improper relationship with a student. No registration required for that offense. Carter had no authority to make the defendant register.

Anonymous said...

Ted Poe sure acts like he is running for something.

Anonymous said...

I hope Lloyd Oliver runs again this year.

Carl R Pruett said...

Did Ted beat his battle with leukemia? If so, he’d be great.

Carl R Pruett said...

Anybody know how to reach Vanessa?