Political news

Image courtesy United States Congress

Local media is swarming around the Travis County Criminal Justice Complex this afternoon for the first day of jury selection in Tom DeLay's trial on money laundering and conspiracy charges. DeLay is the former-Republican House Majority Leader who is accused of conspiring to launder $190,000 in corporate cash to political campaigns. DeLay insists he's innocent.

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Presiding Judge Karen Keller
Still from Texas Tribune video

Sharon Keller is the Texas judge who was publicly reprimanded for closing her court on Sept. 25, 2007 and preventing lawyers from filing a last-minute appeal hours before their client was executed. Earlier this month, the top criminal judge in Texas absolved Keller of any wrongdoing. In an interview with AP immediately following that decision, Keller said she felt vindicated.

KUT News

As Texans across the state continue to hit the polls this week for early voting, several reports have surfaced of voter intimidation. The Houston Chronicle reports the most recent allegations have been in Harris County:  

Polling scene
Photo by KUT News

It always comes as something of a shock to political junkies this time of year that not everyone’s a political junkie! (You may actually know people like this, yourself.)

Those in the political world (and those covering it) find themselves living from campaign claim to opposition counterclaim in the weeks leading up to Election Day.

Paul Workman is Running for House District 47
KUT News

House District 47 candidates Paul Workman says he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.  In an e-mail from his campaign the 58-year-old Republican said the cancer was discovered during a recent routine  physical, and that he's been given an optimistic prognosis because the cancer was detected early.  He also says he's not dropping out of his race against Democratic incumbent Valinda Bolton.

In this week's Tribcast, KUT's Ben Philpott, and the Texas Tribune's Evan Smith, Ross Ramsey and Elise Hu discuss early voting trends, the Perry/White interviews, third party candidates for governor and the youth vote.



Bill White TRS
Photo by Ian Dille KUT News

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White lobbed more allegations of cronyism and corruption at incumbent Republican Governor Rick Perry. On Tuesday, Mayor White launched what his campaign dubbed their “October Surprise.”

The former Houston mayor spoke on the steps of the Teacher Retirement System building. TRS is the largest pension fund in the State, valued at over 100 billion dollars.

TRS Building
Photo by Ian Dille for KUT News.

Today, in an event trumpeted by his campaign as its "October surprise," Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White held a press conferance on the front steps of the Teacher Retirement Systems (TRS) building in downtown Austin. The TRS manages a trust fund valued at over $100 billion on behalf of 1.3 million current and former Texas teachers.

Photo courtesy Jerry Patterson campaign website

Gun-toting incumbent land commish Jerry Patterson is once again having a laugh over the idea of shooting his political opponents.  This time, the target is Democratic candidate for agriculture commissioner, Hank Gilbert.

Dallas Morning News reporter Christy Hoppe reports how Patterson "shoots from the lip."

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White and Texas Governor Rick Perry
Photo illustration by Nathan Bernier for KUT

Early voting starts today and everything is running smoothly so far at Travis County polling stations.  That's not really a surprise, given that early voting rarely draws large crowds.