Mike VanDeWalle http://kut.org en Starting Next Week, HD 50 Voters Head to the Polls for Special Election http://kut.org/post/starting-next-week-hd-50-voters-head-polls-special-election <p>Democrat Celia Israel and Republican Mike VanDeWalle <a href="http://kut.org/post/hd-50-special-election-headed-january-runoff-update" target="_blank">emerged as the leaders</a> in a <a href="http://kut.org/post/meet-candidates-hd-50-special-election" target="_blank">four person race in November</a>. VanDeWalle leads the pack with about 39 percent of the vote. On election night, he said the win was driven by energy from Republicans who want a change after nine years of <a href="http://kut.org/post/austin-rep-mark-strama-resigns-run-google-fiber-rollout-update" target="_blank">Democrat Mark Strama</a>.</p><p>“Yes I think there’s been a pent up excitement waiting to happen," VanDeWalle&nbsp;told KUT. "And I think we’re seeing it now.”&nbsp;</p><p>But the concern for VanDeWalle’s campaign is that the November victory could be his ceiling—the remaining 61 percent of voters picked one of the three Democrats in the race. With Israel getting the majority of that support, the long-time Democratic activist and real estate agent knows a special election runoff brings its own set of problems for her.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/129371912&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Tue, 14 Jan 2014 13:00:00 +0000 Ben Philpott 9534 at http://kut.org Starting Next Week, HD 50 Voters Head to the Polls for Special Election