Ch 5 GOVT 2306.003
Popular in State and Local Government
Popular in Political Science
POLS 1101 096
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Elections in Texas I 1H1 m Mr quotI r w 39 rt v i 4 After his failed 2012 presidential run Texas governor Rick Perry decided not to run for re election in 2014 Perry s announcement paved the way for Attorney General Greg Abbott to seelr the Republican nomination for governor With Comptroller Susan Combs s retirement and Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson s run for attorney general most of the statewide offices were open seats creating a whirlwind of campaign activity With only token opposition Attorney General Abbott trounced his primary opponents in March 2014 and faced Democrat Wendy Davis in November 2014 Wendy Davis became a national figure when she fili bustered a bill that would have tightened abortion access in Texas Because Davis was a state senator from a moderate district in Fort Worth state Democrats and many national Democrats saw in her an opportunity to turn Texas blue again But Davis had a monumental task before her as no Democrat had been elected statewide in Texas since Bob Bullock had won the lieutenant governor s office in 1994 If elected she would have become the second Democratic woman to be elected governor in Texas since World War ll Ann Richards was Texas governor from 1991 to 1995 when she was defeated by George W Bush Davis s major challenge was to appeal to a broad segment of Texas s electorate Some Latino leaders initially expressed concerns with her candidacy when she did not actively campaign in the Rio Grande Valley running up to the Democratic primaries Her Opponent in the primary Reynaldo Madrigal who did not campaign and had virtually no campaign funds actually beat her in some south Texas counties Some pundits argued that Davis s prochoice notoriety may have hurt her among many religious Catholic tatinos in the Rio Grande Valley Whatever the case Davis and the state Democratic Party had to attract a significant number of Latino votes in order to have a reasonable chance of winning statewide Simply put there were not enough white liberals in Texas for Democrats to win statewide elections Davis39s campaign also featured a rocky start with allegations that she abandoned her children to move to Boston to attend law school While she denies these claims Davis has had to face charges that she put her career before her family when she decided to leave her husband and children behind in Fort Worth when she attended Harvard Law School Defenders of Davis have noted that a male candidate would never face similar accusations and that sexism was at play in this charge Davis was also accused of misleading voters by claiming she lived in a trailer for a longer period than she actually did and that J 13 tuition Whatever the true story was the centre quot quot quot 1 r er law school she did not acknowledge her second husband svzppjrggzippppe IIIIIIIIICIIIIII IIICIII beral Democrats to a broader electorate These voters had played a major for the governorship against Clayton o be elected1 Texas many pundits claim Davis to extend her appeal beyond ll including suburban Republican women voter role in Ann Richards s successful campaign Williams in 1988 and had to be won if Davis were in order for a Democrat to win a statewide race in I I d Re IItIIIIIan thatthe candidate must run a flawless Campaign agams t aglfwft Derfio crats v i lish this against Abbott an be candidate Davis did not accomp II I I Tate senator I 7 gt I fgovernorhowevt9l w1thS I had hope in the race for lieutenan I I I I III whose Lama a 39 v v is was a San Antonio Democra Leticia Van de Putte Van de Put I I t v as background was seen as a strong asset in the race and her persngaIl StIIIOal IiIS quot r dsegmento LBSquot r iiiClan might appeal to a broa I I a pharmam tumed p0 quot v 39 blican statesenator who r d Dan Patrick a bombastic FielOlLl g 39 I plopUIamn She face v 39 quot Dquot hurst for not being a 2 s tenant governor David ew x I t I challenged the incumbent lieu I II v i v at conservative enough His platform SUESSBCI Stopping the invas39on ELSEIEIIM by v t i i border security Van de Putte was o I immigrants and toughening UP I I I I I I Be comfortablyI i v 39 i v Texas and Patrick won the ra the number of Republican votes in II II I I III WEIIIIUIIQ The v r lected governor and lieutenan g Why should it matter who is e III III 0m George WI 7 I t national stature as we reca r t t overnor of Texas has importan I I V v er to Eush s successful transition to the presciench Tl lBIgWeI39I InOlI hf tzfa gwme H v 39 39 d influence public i210 103 quoti 39e 39 39 Eat the agenda fem lenglatm an were 0f the lieu I 7 rfui position in Texas The po lieutenant governor also is a powe I I IIIIIIee GhaIIS and I t the agenda appomting commi v t tenant governor include setting I I I I l t ant t 7 v oformer ieu en r 39 i to Senate Some governors were a s I II I premde overthe Sta 39 39 quot l t ons received more a me these highprofile e ec I I guerriOi39S such as RICK Perry W I I I I I I I I IIIIbIIG ttention than usual from voters the reality is that all elections matter for l3 policy in Texas Elections to the city c also make a huge difference in our IN I I tax policy and environmental p li y are all a efte sent us whether at the national or local level ouncil school board and state legislature as Education funding health care policy d by whom we elect to repre CHAPTER 5 ELECTlONS lN TEXAS Features of Elections in Texas Elections are the most important vehicles by which the people express themselves in the democratic process in Texas At the na tional level elections are limited to the see lection of the president and vice president via the Electoral College and members of Congress in Texas however voters select candidates for various o ces in all three statewide branches of government the legislature executive and judiciary and in numerous local elections Texans also vote for changes to the state constitution which can alter public policy in the state In theory such elections are meant to enable the people to exercise some direct control over each branch In practice however oneparty dominance and low levels of voter participation have often told a different story leaving the government exposed to special interests and big money Elections are the mechanisms people use to select leaders authorize actions by government and borrow money on behalf of government In Texas there are a multitude of elections primary elections general elections city elections school board elections special elections elections for community college boards and the governing boards for special districts and bond elections for city county and state governments Primary Elections Primary elections are the rst elections held in an electoral cycle In Texas they are generally held on the second TUesday in March of evennumbered years Primary elections determine the party s nominees for the general election They are con ducted by the political party and funded jointly by the party and the state Essen tially parties collect filing fees from those seeking nomination and use these funds to pay for their share of holding the primary election The Democratic and Republican parties conduct primaries in all of Texas s 254 counties Within each county voters cast ballots in precincts The number of voting precincts varies depending on the population of the county Less populated couna ties such as Loving and Kennedy have as few as 6 precincts whereas Harris County contains more than 1000 voting precincts Republicans seeking their party s nomination le papers and pay a ling fee to the Republican Party Likewise Democrats le papers and pay a ling fee to the Democratic Party If several Republicans or Democrats seek the office of governor they will campaign against each other and one will be chosen to run in the general election Winning the primary election requires an absolute major ity The party s nominees must have more votes than all opponents combined If no candidate receives an absolute majority there is a runoff primary between the two candidates receiving the most votes Vbters who participate in the Republican Party primary cannot vote in a Democratic runoff likewise anyone who voted in the Democratic Party primary cannot vote in a Republican runoff However those who voted in neither the Democratic nor Republican primary can vote in either the Republican or Democratic runoff primary An open primary allows any registered voter to cast a ballot in either but not both primaries There are no party restrictions One can consider oneself a Republican and vote the Democratic primary or can leave home intending to primary election a ballot vote in which citizens select a partyls nominee for the general election runoff primary a second primary election held between the two candidates who received the most votes in the first primary election if no candidate in the first primary election had received a majority tipBin primary a primary election in which any registered voter can participate in the contest regardless of party affiliation FEATURES OF ELECTIONS lN TEX iS 139 ates were obviously hoping that an independent can acy would attract the votes of Democrats who believed th t Democratic candidate for governor could not win in Texas Th l39 al T Vii tflipping to get substantial votes from Republicans disafficiesd Err Eirgll gfsignd perfprmance if the Republican governor Rick I a par icu arseeme to have stron a x ealtoD 839 crats who usually contributed lar e sunt 39 i 3 pp quot 6an One study of Strayhorn s contribufions frirholtlilfifhfiblilihf Dizml39 lfs39 of 2095 for example found that 52 percent of her cafnpaighvefiind vaVZre from people who had given exclusively or almost exc1usivel mocrats over the previous ve years2 y D S Each state decides its own requirements for getting on the ballot mortar states ptake it easier for independents to get on the ballot but the roce xas is re attvely dtfftcult For Friedman and Strayhorn to t 39 th b p 39 SS example they had to meet the following requirements ge on E E11101 for LThewic sigtlaftltIfjidatesthSt Tiltam Signatures On a pawn fmm 1T Egistered voters The 39 7 39 mus squat percent or the total 7 r r k l 39 39 tesmthel t This m i39 i i V0 35 governor s race 2 Th cant that Friedman and Straffhoirn each had to obtain 45 540 signatures e signatures must come from re 39 I I I I r gistered voters who d a V PDh ml Party primary election 1d nc t PamCleats 1n 3 Signature collection can 39n quot h v not be 1 39 nit dcji ft 39 ln 2006 this it raS iv larch 8 g u39 11 t e 1 3 er the 135i Pill lal i Election 4 voters may si in x v 39v f 39 an 0 ly one candidate s p etiti n signature provided will counts 01139 If the 51 bet I only the rst Th t 39 i r in e W0 majgr pelltlcal part 153 don t agree on much but they do agree on he ag10titgetttors out Malong it dif cult for independents to get their Nineteenth amendment ratified in 1919 amendment guaranteeing women the right to vote suffrage term referring to the right to vote CHAPTER S ELECTIONS IN TEXAS 0 Participation in Texas Elections When we think of political participation we often think of voting This is the most basic and fundamental duty citizens have in democracy Other forms of political partici pation include signing petitions protesting and writing letters to the newspaper and elected of cials some of which we will dis cuss in this chapter and others we will discuss in later chapters Here we begin by examining the history of voting in the state and the regulations and procedures surrounding voting rights Issues include who can vote how easy it is to register to vote and why so few Teatans vote 3 Earlier Restrictions n the Franchise g or the right to vote For mfich of the period The franchise refers to the act of votin began in the late nineteenth century there of oneparty Democratic control that were restrictions on the franchise llowed to vote in primaries and party conventions in Texas Women W39omen were a all elections as a result of the Nineteenth in 1918 and obtained the right to vote in Amendment to the US Constitution in 1920 However some of the most influ ential politicians in the state were opposed to the franchise for women Joseph Weldon Bailey for example who had been Democratic leader in the U S House of Representatives and later the informal Democratic leader in the US Senate was an eloquent opponent of women s suffrage arguing that women could not vote because they could not perform the three basic duties of citizenship jury service posse coniitatus service citizens who at e deputiaed to deal with an emergency and military service He believed that women s morals dictated their beliefs and women would force their beliefs on men The result he felt would be prohibition of alcohol4 Tinie Wells the wife of Jim Wells perhaps the most influential south Texas political leader of his day was also an important and influential spokesperson for the an39tiewomen s suffrage movement5 Governor quotFarmer Jim Ferguson was another opponent of women s suffrage but when he was impeached his successor William P Hobby proved a key supporter of women s right to vote It was Gover nor Hobby Who called the legislature into special session in 1919 to consider the Nineteenth Amendment Thus Texas became the ninth state and the first state in the South to ratify the women s suffrage amendmentEl The Poll Tax Minorities had an even tougher time gaining access to the ballot in Texas In the early part of the twentieth century powerful political bosses had influence over Latino voters They used this power to support national politicians such as John Nance Garner Garner represented a huge part of south Texas which stretched from Laredo to Corpus Christi and then north almost to San Antonio A lifelong Democrat he began his service in the House of Representatives in 1903 and served until 1933 From 1931 to 1933 he was Speaker of the US House of Representatives and from 1933 to 1941 he was vice president of the United States He is most famous for his quip that the vice presidency was not worth more than a bucket of warm spit Garner was the economic power and personal I I I I I I pLSI Ft39ISpIegjker from Texasdand the first vice president from Texas Hic unth TEan I 391 iCEi see was secure b votes that x I L if 39 39 39 39 C31 bosses 3 were controlled by the south Texas politi IIIIIIIIIS Sires rictiog on votIing that affected poor people in general during this era COIIIIIIIII thin git Icneicted in 1992 it refiuired voters to 1333 a tar presumably to i e cos 5 o e lections by the end of Janna 39 I 39 i if i A iquot i II I I try in an election that took la 39 in earIlDy November That tax was usually between 1 50 and 1 75 it was a Em CE F l a u I quot I I i gt I IIIIIIIIIa uttIiI had to bgdeaid in advance of the election and in the first third of the 1 33 e tax cou ie one two or ev I i i 7 1 II I 1 enmoredaswaesfo l Thus it tended to disenfranchise poorEr people y g r r a farm WD Ten wou f 50 Tefas POh39 Cal bosses used the poll tax to great advantage They 39 39 purcrase arge numbers of poll tax rec c 39 39 39 I I I I eipts and rovide th I v r the supporters who 0ft I P a nose receipts to I v en depended on the boss 7 f t 39 b r 39 legal and political 3 quot ES Of 19 3 31101 Other economic i v ssrstance and who therefore w I 1d quot I Although the 11 I 0 V0116 as the bosses wanted L w po tax was made illegal in federal e1 39 39IECtlDilSin 1964b th 39 5 3 T E i I 39 y 6 35 inlosiai tSZCEEEH EIy IgOUIth AirIIiendment to the US Constitution it remained ligal I K I am exas unti 1966 when it was heldu39 quot I i I I II I I I I i r 1 titutional El Aft til1 elimination of the poll tax TeX 39 39 cons 39 ET B I as continued to require early regist a ration for trout registration more than nine months bcf 39 Hg quot w l I s Dre the general election E 1 A v39 was required on a yearly basis Thi I arY registration I I a s requirement effectively r a s W I I I I I II p evented m1 rant orkers fiom voting These provnnons lasted until 1971 when they were voidfd by Partici 39 7 Te cgbtfiun tiiIIIslecItiouinii Texas is low relative to that in other states In the past them were was III pisIIIIon t is ZT iI39ECf HSE One such restriction that discouraged poor people ag 1 on 1 1g 1 39 w 0 fax it tier remained isgali ii T 39 39 r I exas until 1966 Here v poll tax and then vote against Pappy O Dautel I New are TSTET T pay the pull tax a state imposed tax on voters as a prerequisite for voting poll taxes were rendered unconstitutional in national elections by the TwentyiFourth Amendment and in state elections by the Supreme Court in 1966 early registration the requirement that a voter register long before the general election in effect in Texas until 1971 PARTICIPATION IN TEXAS ELECTIONS 143 white primary primary election in which only white voters are eligible to participate Iaylairrl Party after the white primary was ruled unconstitutional this offshoot Democratic party preselected candidates for the Democratic primary and prohibited African Americans from participating 9 Texas even prohibited anyone who was not a property 01931 from voting in revenue bond and tax elections until the practice was Cy federal courts in 197510 Texas also required an unusually long period 01 ngVV 1 A I U 39 7 39 39 l 39 39 the state for at least one year an o a Until 1970 voters had to have lived in V V V VV V V V VtVVVVVC lived in the county for at least six months prior to votingVThis ansV another res tion on the franchise that was struck down by the federal courts the federal courts The White Primary The most oppressive restriction on the franchise horieyv V litical Strength of African American vo e W35 d651g 3d t9 mmlmlze the p0 7 l k t numerous a A der scrutiny by federa cour s the white prlmary This practice came un V V V VV V V V VVVVV E times in the 21 years between 1923 and 1944 YE E E Ch Ema the 391an VleVerslVngpik e i r to maintain the white primary an exc u and state parties found a way V V V V V V VV Vt voters In 1923 the Texas legislature flatly prohibited African Atalanta 2111 V318 i ng39 in the Democratic primary Since Texas was a oneparty a Vt tV 5 tVflllVeonVVVV effect of course was to preyent African Americans from pgftlilggiflg ns quot erEI 39 J V 7 V V quotf k n a gt 39 ble to do th1s because 0 a r real election contests Texas was a V F d 1 vim at n 39 w i v States which dealt With a we 61393 C3 P 3 Court decrsron Newben39y a United d V VV VV 1 VV 7 i 1 that the primary e EC VV A tmg the law the Court state expenditures law In l tETPTE V V 1 v12 This cleared 39 r of holding the e ectron 7 tion was39ln no real sense part of the manne V V V V V V V Verb the way for southern states including TEXAS 90 dlsc mm te against Af ca Am39 cans in the primaries V V V V V In 192739 however the Supreme Court struck down the Texas thEEfolmiri law claiming that the lesal ban 0T1 blile participation 135 WOTTTHI C t EPZESE 39 quot 39 V V V V 1311 reVsanse re exas egrsa ure rotection clause of the Constitution V V V V V V V t E Soother law that authorized the political quot1331 tie3 thmugli their Starr i M v quotli cations for voting 11 1 t E Primalles 39 a39 39 1 committees to determine the qua V V V h V V S that What a I a to create white primaries l het eory wa V of COLLESE allowed the Partles rt Quid autho 7 39 v r v fthe Fourteenth Amendm eat 1 c state could not do directly because 0 V V 1 39 reme rim political parties to do However in Mason a Condon 1932 the USfStEIV State Court held that the state executive committees wereVVVaCtl g 3 ageitV SVV EV a I VES VVVV 1t if 39 v39 E 7 39 fthe Feurteenti39 Amen 111611 st 5 r and were discriminating in violation 0 V V V V V V V V thCVut the Texas Democratic Party COD TE tiQ r ACtl g 0111155 Own autho w and W1 39 39 39 quot I ens any state law passed a resolution that con ned party membersth to white ClttZ That case was also appealed to the US Supreme Court and Greasy Torzitspp 1935 the Court held there was no violation othhe Fourteglntlli VilI39VVr39rcVeVVVVVVVVV9VVS Fourteenth Amendment recluires eCIual protection pnder t e airy dOI V m VVSVVVVVVVE of all races However the Court said ghat thVils rexqu1reretp Vf aquiizmg the t action b quotrivate groups ince t are was n V VV V V V hlfglpfifhary the Claim believed there was no state action bonly Virfrigplgnggsp by a private organization the Democratic Party which is not annthVVV1 15544 when teenth Amendment39s Thus the Court upheld the white primaVrVy on V V OVVVVVVEVVVV 3V in Smith a Allwright it decided that the operation of primary e echtVlens 1an at dVVVVV much state action and so much public responsrbility that the wt rte prrm y involve unconstitutional state actiond Even with the Smith decision at least one V ries by the Jayhird Party This was a Democratic political African Americans The winners in the J aybird primary Democratic Party primary in which they were never and where they seldom had opposition nally ruled that the laybird primary was of the elective process in the county Thus Texas county held unof cial prima org aniaation that excluded then entered the regular CHAPTER 5 ELECTlDNS 1N TEXAS defeated fer county of ce In Terry v Adams the US Supreme Court an integral and the only effective part the Fifteenth Amendment which deals with the right to vote was applicable and the white preprimary primary of the J aybird Party was ruled unconstitutionalli What made the white primary restriction work for Democrats during this era was the fact that Texas was a oneparty state Where elections were decided in the Democratic Party primary 1f Texas had had a competitive twoparty system during this era the state might have had a more dif cult time imposing and maintaining these restrictions on the franchise In a competitive twoeparty system to obtain and retain power both parties would have to search for ways to build and increase their base of support in order to be the victorious party in a oneparty system there is a greater incentive to restrict participation in the party in order to retain control over it Losers in a battle for control of a one party system essentially have no place to go If they cannot maintain a place in the dominant party s councils then they have no other avenue for expressing their political views Expanding the Franchise At least since the 19405 there has been a gradual expansion of the franchise in Texas Much of that expansion was brought about by litigation in the federal courts often by African American and Latino civil rights organizations For example the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People led law suits throughout the 19605 and 13970s challenging laws that restricted or otherwise stunted African American political advancement The Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund MALDEF has also been active in monitoring any changes in electoral laws and challenging them if they prevented Latino political advancement Federal laws also played an important role in the expansion of the ranchise The most important of these laws was the tinting Rights Act of 1965 which applied to Texas as a result of congressional amendments after 1975 The Voting Rights Act was a piece of legislation initially aimed at ensuring that African Americans were not discriminated against at the polls The year prior to the passage of this bill Congress had passed the Civil Rights Act which was intended to ensure the equal ity of African Americans in terms of access to businesses hotels and other public facilities President Lyndon B Johnson signed both laws rams Court In 20B the Colurt r 7 I quot 739 39 us Su StiPPOTfsrs of the Voting Rtgltts Act rally outsrdc the p H prom 39 ml Whisk mmgd m ruled that Section 5 oftlta Voting Rights Act the praclcarnnce protect minority votersrwos unconstitutional changes in electoral procedures approved v districts or other Texas to have Its new lurnbia federal court by the US Department of Justice or a District of Co r r lrpr 7 m I quotH l E H In 5 or a r I V 1 1 4 r I is H I I 39 quotHI 39 Iquot 1 Wuquot uw3939 Aids 2 lL if T43 quot1 F li39 quot l v 39r 39ome Highly partisan legislation passed in 2011 may make 1 mare 1 8an sample to vote Over Democratic opposition the Repubhcan ma ority din iiication legislature passed a voter identi cation law that 1footln ies Ighila lgg iremam 39 I thepotoi enfi caion trim to vote Republican5 dalmed that m l I d eCESSmy in order to prevent voter fraud Democrats 1n Citi tfaljt liege argufir l quot landthatth39elawwimaei are that evidence of voter fraud is minimal V 7 a n Eu oft a d the elderly all of whom W le V pp 39 low39mmme persons StUdentS an 39 13139 are a driver s l 7 a 39denti cation that are accepta 6 3quot Democrats to votel8FOI lS 0f Fill010 1 l fP hl39 l9 fet Perquot T 39 cate a Departments u re a y license an election identl cation certi r F r V rt and p y quot 39 ahlp cettl ate E1 passpo quoti V l ID card a US rnllitary 1D 3 Us Cltlz ns y I V Ogpartment of Public Safety issued concealed handgun license Pigttglp 7 l Ll 39 39x quot 39 tacceptahleAs we note at E Egmli issued bsco esssa d Mama 10 l r hquot H l Jimwnsht 7 n it for former Speakero t e ouse of Chapter 313113 13W made 1 dif 39cu ll it as be l 7 v 39 quotf the Texas voter ID lawr Wt 11 1111 a to vote in 2013 It rerna1ns to be seen 1 39 r P 39 i and u ders such as Governor Eff l the a ellate courts State political lea V V t C I C uph dd by pfmjbott have argued that Texas should not he Sl ngCl riot agg l 3 t d to the s ecial scrutiny an 3 our l3 and sublec re p The You Decide Attorney Genera with other southern states h allowed to have a voter ID law without any approval process section takes a closer look at this issue CHAPTER S ELECTIONS IN TEXAS YDU DE ClDE Voter identi cation Laws In 2011 the Texas legislature passed a law that requires all voters to produce photo identification when they present themselves to vote in an election Prior to the law Texans could present a voter registration certificate which does not carry a photograph Link der the new law not all forms of photo identification are considered valid for voting purposes For example state issued concealed weapons permits are allowed but student identification cards are not A voter who shows up to the polls without appropriate photo identification may cast a provisional ballot but must return to the registrar s office with photo identification within six days to make his or her vote count Supporters of the law argue that requiring photo identification is neces sary to ensure the integrity of the elec tion system and assure Texans that their elections are free from fraud They claim that fraud often undetected and difficult to prosecute so the absence of high rates of voter fraud prosecution does not mean that it is a problem that should be ignored Supporters believe that having the potential of penalties for breaking the law will deter any attempts to commit fraud They point out that one needs to show photo identification to board airplanes conduct official busi ness and perform transactions with banks and other organizations They also point to public opinion polls show ing that the majority of Texans support the simple proposition that you must show photo identification to prove who you are in order to vote Opponents of the law claim that the measure is not really about preserving the integrity of the electoral system but it is meant to minimize Democratic turnout in order to help the state He publican Party keep its hold on power Those who oppose the law claim that it 39 puts an undue burden on populations who are less likely to possess photo identification and who often vote for Democrats such as elderly disabled minority and poor voters by making them go through additional steps to vote The law does provide for free photo identification but in some rural areas opponents argue the nearest Department of Public Safety office is faraway and not easily accessible In addition opponents suggest that the law is in essence a solution in search ofa problem pointing to studies that show there is no real problem concern ing voter fraud in Texas The question remains whether voter identification laws are on balance posi tive or negative There are legitimate arguments for and against the legisla tion but one thing is clear Republi cans strongly support the measure and Democrats have attempted to stop the measure This fact alone suggests that Republicans believe they will electo rally benefit from the law while Democrats believe they will be harmed In Wiscon sin a federal judge agreed with chal lengers to that state s voter ID law and declared it unconstitutional because of social science evidence suggesting that minorities were adversely affected by the new requirements However backers of the Texas law point to data showing that turnout in the November 2013 election was nearly double that of previous elections without the voter ID requirement including in heavily Hispanic counties This suggests they argue that the law did not adversely affect minority turnout You decide Should voter IDs be required for voting in Texas elections 3 r g quot g 7 ll V3V 2 r J U l l l 5 l l l l equations 1 pertussisilmsnts for intricaciesl aging a is a way to compromise oh39t is if so what an cramoranriisa39inah iii hes motor voter law a national act passed in 1093 that requires states to allow people to register to vote when applying for a driver39s license Qualifications to Vote Today meeting the quali cations to register to vote in Texas is relatively easy A voter must be 1 eighteen years of age a US citizen 3 a resident of Texas for 30 days 4 a resident of the county For 30 days To be eligible to vote one must be a registered voter for 30 preceding the election and a resident of the voting precinct on the day of the election Two groups of citiaens cannot vote even it they meet all the precedipg quali cations Jfelons who have not completed their sentences and those judged by a court to be mentally incompetent V I g I V According to the Texas secretary of state 719l percent of states voting agepopulation 135 million citizens was registered to vote i112014 The motor voter law which allows individuals to register to vote when applyin g for or renew ing driver s licenses is one Factor in increased registration Public schools distribute voter registration cards as students turn l8 Cooperative efforts between the secre tary of state39s of ce and corporations also increase the number of registered voters Most colleges and universities also have registration drives to encourage young people to register to vote 7 Following the November 2012 election a Census Bureau survey found that registration rates varied across racial and ethnic lines Latino eligible voters reg istered at a 545 percent rate below that of blacks 732 percent and whites 730 percent22 Low Voter Turnout In most elections fewer than 50 percent of US citizens vented3 Even fewer Texans exercise their right to vote especially young people Texas ranks last in the nation in voter participation Table 51 provides data on the abysmal turnout of registered voters in the various types of recent Texas elections Considering the ease kOl ngflSr tration and the ability to vote early voter participation should be higher Why do so few Texans vote a g I A more detailed analysis reveals several factors that may contribute to low pars ticipation rates low levels of educational attainment low per capita income high rate of poverty location in the South young population traditionalistic and individualistic political culture candidateecentered elections and little party competition lack of media attention to substantive political issues large numbers of undocumented residents and felons wwwmmeoarow Education and income appear to be the two most important factors in deters mining whether someone votes and this is often referred to as socloeconornlc sta 148 CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS IN TEXAS Turnout by Registered Voters in Texas Elections VOTING TURNDUT AS PERCENTAGE OF ELECTION REGISTERED VOTERS 2001 special election constitutional amendments 80 2002 Democratic primary gubernatorial 84 2002 Republican primary gubernatorial i 51 2002 general election gubernatorial 362 2003 special election constitutional 122 2004 Democratic primary presidential 88 T 2004 Republican primary presidential 58 200d general election presidential 566 2005 special election constitutional amendments 180 7 2006 Democratic primary gubernatorial 40 2008 Republican primary gubernatorial 52 2008 general election gubernatorial 338 200 November special election constitutional amendments T 87 2008 general election presidential 585 T 2009 November special election constitutional amendments 82 2010 Democratic primary gubernatorial 52 7 2010 Republican primary gubernatorial 114 2010 general election gubernatorial 380 2011 November special election 50 2012 Republican primary presidential 113 2012 Democratic primary presidential 50 7 2013 Novemberispecial elections constitutional amendments 88 20Mr Democratic primary gubernatorial 41 2014 Republican primary gubernatorial i 98 2014 general election gubernatorial 338 We in Texas low levels of education and high levels oi poverty are both the strongest predictors of low voter participation While college students and other young adults were mobilized by President Obarna39s election in 2008 and 2012 the fact remains that voter turnout among this demographic is low in addition the average age of Texans is less than the national average and young people vote in smaller numbers this may also contribute to Texas39s low turnout rate PARTICIPATION iN TEXAS ELECTIONS 149 WHO ARE TEXANS a in 2014 only 3 quot39 perverti 0f 391rgte39r5 exist ballots in I Who Votes in Texas Voter Turnout by Race 2012 Eiamajflli mw MW 7 ns a e nonwhite population exceeds the Anglo population However this does not mean that the 39rnajorihr of the state s voters are nonwhite it is still the Texas Totals case that the Latino population is underrepresented compared In the southern states that composed the Confederacy individuals participate Citizen voting to their DODUIation on the in smaller numbers than in other parts of the United States Texas was part of the age population state39s voter rolls 15891110 Confederacy and its level of participation is consistent with lower levels of voting in the South That said Texas differs from most other southern states with its large Latino population many of whom perhaps up to 20 million are not eligible to IOIIIIiIIrIrIn pI g QOOI i Total voter vote because either the are not re istered or the are undocumented residents in v 39 V E turnoutt 339 g Y gt the state Moreover the overwhelming majority of these Latinos are from Mexico g If K I 39 and may not have heen brought up in a politicl culture that encourages participate tion at the polls As the Children born and educated in America of these residents reach voting age it is likely that registration rates and voting rates among Latinos will increase For now however thev remain lower than those for whites or blacks According to the political scientist Daniel Elaaar Texas39s political culture is tra ditionalistic and individualistic see Chapter l 24 Low levels of voting characterize these cultures In a traditionalistic political culture the political and economic elite discourage voting People choose not to vote in individualistic cultures because of fan in g seal or perceived corruption in government 7 m w W I lm i will ill323333 Interestingly there are still other possible explanations for low voter participa quot I 39 7 we 3955350 tion in Texas in keeping with the Texas tradition of decentralized government I there are so manv elections in Texas and so many candidates for of ce that vot Latino voter turnout era are simply overloaded with elections and candidates Note that as shown in 7 39 Table 51 voter participation was much higher in the general election than in the l quotTa f h T Citizen totingquot ouuquaha nana H g 10 voter tUl l iDUi White voter turnout Hquot quot39 special constitutional election if there were fewer elections the ballot might be iii 1 Er age population longer but voter turnout would liker be higher because more voters would he t avg09595 attracted to at least some races or issues on the ballot Additionallv the practice of having elections in nonpresidential election vears decreases voter turnout because the highest voter participation tends to occur for presidential elections A third problem is that most elections in Texas involve verv lowvisibilitv of ces Voters likely know little about the candidates for these positions or the of ces themselves and such lack of knowledge would naturallyr discourage voter participation Efr rm a 3 th African American voter turnout aooooo Lg Citizen voting h sa ae DOPU39BW guesses forts have been made in a number of states most notahlv Nashington to increase Asian voter turmut voter loiowledge by having the state provide biographical intormation about the quot l a 3 candidates to voters but Texas makes little eitort to enhance voter knot dodge oi vre ire H a s a 1 l a a v a quot r 39 u Citizen voting l quot 1 4 w a candldates Independent groups such as the League of Nmen Voters otten pro r to i dig M iii X ii i 3 age populati l vide voter guides but only readers oi newspapers or those who actively seek these 0 quotHquot or quothequot HJ snares r 2 quot I 39 m 39 a wfc iv P 39 voter gu1des heneh t from this mformation Finallv some suggest that the new voter z Z 39 P39 r 39 u quotquot l Wquot quot392 1 39 wuss sum identi cation law wrll reduce voter turnout even more percemage Mower gutmg 3g I In re 39 quot I 9 some Ionw ovoted in 2012 ourcle Nonoltizen data from lJS Census Bureau Current Population Survey a 39 39 v quot one group data from Arnenoan CommunitySurvey US Census Bureau Turnout data from U5 Census Bureau CHRPTEH 5 ELECTlONS lid TEXAS I rsxas AND THE Marion air s I Early Voting I I I If I II I I It is designed for those early voting a procedure that Early voting is a procedure that increases the polling period from 12 hours on Elec I 39 allows voters to cast ballts tion Day to an additional two weeks prior to the election The legislature has al D T f I I A a II a I I i exans Vote In 20129 I i I I during the two week period lowed early voting in an effort to increase participatior mmquot the magma W scheduled tvho have trouble getting to the polls between 7 aivi and 7quot PM on Election Day For election date I i quot I III II I v a 1 most elections early voting commences on the l rth day beloi e the e ELUDItti and ends four days prior to Election I I r r 39 I 39 I 7 Il Ttreating early is basrcally the same as voting on Election Day An indnudual ap Race I I II III I i I I I I 39 I I I 39 quoti I 2 one i g r pears at one oi the designated polling places presents appropriate identi cation ma r Romney l l I and receives and casts ballot Early voting has at best only m des39tl i illCleaSEd Nationa h h M r we White ii39fifir i 39 yoting participation I I Predictions that Democrats virould bene t from early voting did not hold true Black igrg I I I I l I in l by 1 39 39 l 39 l 39 39 39 i aliterTeitas moved strongl i into the Republican column Republican candidates for i J 39 quot 39 m T W 39 x 93 i the highest of ce on the ballot get a much larger proportion of early votes than do Hispaan L 1 its H in in y I 39 I 39 I the Democratic candidates In 200de for example 63 percent of this early votes for A5 I I I I V I I I 39 quot 39l quot I quot l s 39 I I I I 71 president in Testas were cast for George W Bush compared with 33 percent of the Ian li l IlII I 1 my I early yotes for John Kerry ln 7 of the 10 elections examinedr however Republicans Other erg h I i i I ii got a slightly smaller proportion of overall votes votes cast in early voting plus 39 39 39 39 39 39 I 39 a I 53 Election Day voting than early votes And in 6 of the l0 electionsi Democrats got a slightly larger proportion of overall votes than early votes This suggests that early Texas I I I I voting has been a bit more bene cial to Republicans than to Democrats although 39 39 Wh39te To 25 the advantage has been very slight Table 52 39 I Black Um M in I 2 r l 7 Iquot J i 39 Ii 39 i 39 88 enumhnauaaaaaas Asian 39 quot if 53 Note D 39 39 39 etc on Asian American voters and other groups were not available from Texas exit polls Other taste as T 39I Caliiornia White quot r aria EARLYovarian vores Eaatvrovearut verse I I I I roe REPUBLICANS FDR oeuocanrs Bloch on in vim an a I u h In in in 39 I YEAR OFFlCE PERCENTAGE OF TOTAL PERCENTQGE 0F TDTALl 39 r 7 His a 39 ritess r 7 quot r r J r rr MshhhnhhhhhhHMMp l 1994 Senate 6236196 arrears AsI I H I h I v i I me i E on I r 39I l 7 i i i j 1996 Fragment 45Iy44 h I I I H 39 h I I i 77 quotif fig 3 Other trial I L I I quot 1 1998 Governor sales 32r 31 I r 39I I g I 39I 52 2000 President 6359 35f 38 2002 Senator Sit3955 sales lFrI39cters in Texas are known for their conservatism and their support of the 39 e lelicani P quot j quot i aces President ssei srss Mi R arll quot1 2012i whlle the country voted for Barack cinema over rmmcal I f Omn ey by a 51 4839maialni Terras went for Rtriiinneirr 57 41 39 k i A l 39 39i 2006 Senator 5656 44quot44 quot I I 39 39 39 39 In Texas these errquot r 39 I I 2008 President W55 4am aIIII OIIIerIIIIIIII II I I it polls show that Romney won in large part because he Won I r i I IeIming share of white voters Ocama won among African American 1quot 39 39i II 2010 Governor 5655 4142 and HISDEHIG Voters in Texas by similar numbers to what he w quot I f a I 39 Romney won 7039 percent of white votes in Texas 11 39 39 Gan nationallyquot i l President 40Iy41 percent Of III I r I i 7 00mm better than I III I I a I I Hg IIIIIIItII SImIIaIIIIII e v ergI he won nationally Compare this to California a state Q quot 39 j SUURCE ETEKEE Secretaryoii State l x I emo rap ics t0 Texas RDmI e won I I i I 39 I I rm I I I I II i I white voters i y only 54 percent 0f callfomla 5 I I I I SOURCE Texasdat a from the YouC rov Texas pollCict Bit Nov 3 2012 N tquot l I I I I l i the EMR Em PDHS39 201239 anmoadad from CNN 0m lacsassocIlliaflilma and cahf mla data fmm II2 2i 1 3 l 39 I I quot quot r 39739i r 39 CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS IN Texas I II I II America and the lower rate of voter turnout for Latino citizens nonHispanic whites wield considerable in uence in the state electorate I 7 7 u v Because most African Americans and Latinos tend to vote for Democrats and I IV v V I 39I I I V i iI 1 V II EA39 8 l Percentage Be glstered voters and I non Hispanic whites tend to vote for Republicans the balance of power in most 39 i r v I IllhlllC Primal I195 state elections currentlr tilts toward Re ublicans Democrats ho 39e that as more x I Popu anon o mg 1 I V i p P V II I I 7 W 7 r t 39 Latinos become citizens they will register and turn out to vote but these hopes PERCENTAGE OF PERCENTAGE OF have yet to fully materialize REGISTERED vonNGIIIaIIIsIIIETIIIG x I DPULATIU a II VOIEEPSUEEIEES III EN REPUBLICAN Public Oplnlon Dili erences on Issues Public opinion on issues varies accorda 39 I I REGISEERSED III PRRIMIBIRIIEIS PRIMARIES ing to race and ethnicity In a book titled Divided Color Donald Kinder and YEAR WIT 39I I I I Lynn Sanders show that the views of African Americans and whites are remarkava 2014 lBIV60V1I324 998 118 I different on issues ranging from the death penaltyquot to affirmatige actiond For eX V 9 i 7 93 i ample according to a November 2013 Texas Tribune survey 70 percent of whites v 2012 13355425 1 1 0 I supported the death penalty while 60 percent ofAfrican Americans supported the 2010 13323358 1140 I 83900 39 death penalty Signi cantly more African Americans however believe that the death I r I 10 68 758 penalty is often implemented for innocent citizens In the same survey 3i percent iI39 quotIV 39 I 2008 12352317 I I I 94 of African Americans believed the death penalty was implemented for innocent j i I 2006 12722671 515 339 I citizens a great deal of the timequot compared with 9 percent of whites In most I I l I i 2004 I12I264I663 560 42 I cases African Americans are more liberal than whites on political issues I 1 I4 01 lrCine issue with remarkable convergence on public opinion between blacks and I I 2002 12218454 5 09 I r I I whites is same sex marriage In Texas according to a June 2013 TEan Tribune sur I39 l i 2300 11612761 970 773 I vey 33 percent of African Americans 38 percent of Whites and 45 percent of La I ll I 5 35 4 24 39 I tinos supported same sex marriage8 This is one reason why Texas is one of several I I i 39 I 397 I I II I II 39 I m i II 1993 1139159 845 states that were able to pass a state constitutional amendment de ning marriage I I II I I 1995 9698506 1052 II IIIIII I in the state as between one man and one woman TNhile the gulf in public opinion I i I V age I I is more pronounced between African Americans and whites compared to Latinos i 39 l 616 l g 1994 9041906 I 39 quot I and whites even the latter two groups differ on attitudes about public policy es I i I pecially the role of government 1 I Consider the issue of immi ration 1 olic Most Latinos surve ed in Texas su I V V s p r I r p y r port the DREAM Act a policy that would allow undocumEnted students who in I I I I V Ir VI II a II liI I r I I II V I II V IV 39 V I V I V V I VqI III I I I V g rI Importance If the Republican Primary I serve in the military or graduate from college to become citiaens According to I i h become in Statewidg I a Februaryr 2014 Texas Tribune poll 54 percent of whites in Texas strongly op I V I V I V as I I I I I I I I I W I Table 53 shows how important the REPUbllca V pr gily I Timar V in this era me I l pose this policy especrally the version that allows college graduates to become l quot ii if elections That is because the Wlnner Of the Re Imam p I I 1 15011 For I citizens29 For conservatives this amounts to an unacceptable form of amnesty for i I I I Republican dominance in the state will be the wnmer of a stateWi e e ec i l illegal immigrants In contrast a minority of Latinos 33 percent strongly oppose I 39 i 39 39 t sand onl quot 793 percent of the voting I I I example 1109 percent of registered vo er 3 I I I I 1 I I T I I Voted in the Republican primary in 2012 but the winner I the are alsomore likerthanI Latinos to support restrictive I age popuation in enas Iv 19902 become the VIIIth m Statewide elECItiO SI of I immigrauon policies although African Ameiicans a1e just as likely to support such I II T III that pIIIIIVIII IIIIIlIIthI I S Slime 1 II rimaries statewide offices are contested and I mmlgratifm pilh esf I I I I I I I I I I COWSE m TVI DI I313 I epIu PETIle H III II Squot n edeamp is a majority of the vote in the I 7 V Regarding education policy Latinos Iin Texas are more lilo39 ljvr toIsupport agIreater III to b8 EUCCVESSTUI memnmgID CE I V I V 39I I 39 I 1 6I Win Statew e Of ce role for government in public education In general Latinos view education as primary In the 2012 ElECUO S thematically a page CIIIIII39 I I th 1 16 as a more important policy issue than their white counterparts This could be for I ll I with the Votes UT 1355 than 5546 pigment of the IIIIIIgIIIIIEITCI IIIIIIIIIEIIS III E II III I several reasons First Latinos are generallyr poorer and less educated than the II III I Silmi g thUSE Ute caSt ballots in the Rapubhca pIIIIIIIIIIIIII majority white population and correctly see educational attainment as a key to Ill I I I success Second many Latinos are immigrants who view education as the ticket Racial and Ethnic Variations in VOtI ng and Partm39pa n I to the American Dream Finally Latinos have the highest high school dropout II I II T V I state with a larger perc mage of lmmi es than non Hispanic 39 rates and this reality has important rami cations for social political and economic I ItiIIlIIIIaIIS II IIItImean thatthe majorityr of the state s voters are minorities For I HdTi emCiltV I I I I V I I I I I I IV I I I w 3911 ES 1I5 DES 110 V I L 1 m mm rised 01113 about 17 per One related issue area With a signi cant divide in opinion between whites and II example in the November 2014 EIECUQIIS III III I Pimps i ciudmg the large Latinos is bilingual education Most Latinos in Texas support the use of bilingual w I cent Of the Texas EIIECtCIIIaIITIIASII IIEIIIIIIIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIIIIEIIIIIII III I M giegand Latin Educationminstruction in English and Spanish until students can transition to 39I I II undgcumented populatiO I i CO SiSU g UT l D IS T Latl39nos Tom I PARTICIPATION IN TEXAS ELECTIONS 155 I 154 I CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS IN TEXAS reappo rtionment process that takes place every 10 years to determine how many congressional seats each state will receive depending on population shirts redistricting the process of redrawing election districts and redistributing legislative representatives in the Texas House Texas Senate and 08 House this process usually happens every 10 years to reflect shirts in population or in response to legal challenges in existing districts preclearance provision under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 requiring any changes to election procedures or district lines to be approved by the 08 Department of Justice or the 08 district court tor the District of Columbia full English instruction On the other hand most Anglos oppose this policy and support total immersion in English A May 2010 Texas Tribune poll shows that 5 5 percent of White Texans strongly supported ending bilingual education while only 22 percent of Latinos supported this position Fortyfour percent of Latinos strongly opposed ending bilingual education while only 15 percent of whites strongly op posed ending bilingual education30 This policy along with attitudes about an En glish Only law for Texas is one of the most polarized by ethnicity in the state Redistricting in Texas Every 10 years the US Census is charged with counting how many people live in the United States The process of reapportio nment involves recalculating how many congressional districts each state will receive based on theistate s popula tion For example Texas gained four new congressional seats following the 2010 Census because of the explosive population growth of the state Since the House of Representatives is capped at 435 members other states had to lobe some of their congressional seats States such as New York lost congressional seats because their populations had increased more slowly during the previous 10 years The state leg islature is tasked with drawing new congressional districts every 10 years to comply with the new overall number of seats allowed In 2011 the Texas legislature drew new congressional districts Figure BIA a process called redistricting This is a blatantly political procedure because the major ity party uses it to retain power by creating as many friendly districts as it can The Republicans in charge of the legislature attempted to draw as many Republican voting districts as possible If Democrats had been in control they would have tried to maximize their number of seats as well Because more than 67 percent of the population growth in Texas was a result of Latino immigration and rates among nativeborn Latinos and foreignborn Latinos Latino leaders in the state wanted at least two of the new seats to be majority Latino Most Latino majority districts in the state tend not to elect Republicans which put the Republicanled legislature in a bind Until a 2013 US Supreme Court decision the terms by which Texas must comply with the Voting Rights Act further complicated the situation Section 5 of the act requires that any changes to election procedures including the drawing of new district lines must go through the process of preclearance This means that the US Department of Justice or a District of Columbia federal court must approve the new district lines in order to make sure that the voting rights of minorities are not diminished Districts that have been created to help minorities win cannot be dismantled in order to bene t a particular political party For the most part it is the southern states of the old Confederacy that were subject to this provision Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott argued that Section 5 of the act violated the Tenth Amendment to the US Constitution because it singles out particular states for preclearance The preclearance requirement is but one example of the conflict between Texas and the federal government on a number of issues see Chapter 3 Governor Perry has frequently criticized the federal government for its regulations and mandates Section 5 is no longer applicable to Texas because of the US Supreme Court s decision in Shelby County v Holder in which the Court ruled that the formula used to determine which states are subject to preclearance CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS 1N TEXAS is unconstitutional Congress must pass a new formula in order for Sectio 5 t become applicable once again When asked whether they thought Texas sIh39 39 Ill be subcjlept to federal oversight of its elections 41 percenth respondents bid if I 7 percent responded no in a Texas Tribune poll conducted in February a In the 2011 redistricting round several lawsuits were led by different quot ties challenging the districts created by the Texas legislature and the federal quotpair Stepped in Figure 5113 Ultimately the legislature and the court creafecl dlrt new congressional district with a majority Latino population that stretched froIhf Bexar County to Travis County along Interstate The three other new dist t were designed to elect Republicans This was accomplished by splittinr TntCis County the seat of Austin into five congressional districts in order to dilate 3th Democratic vote Since most Travis County voters are white Democrats there 7 no protections under the law for diluting their vote The US representative EIer Austin Democrat Lloyd Doggett was forced to run in the new Latino ma o TI district since theother four districts were majority Republican Because of thI f dy eral court s lengthy process the Texas primary was pushed back to Ma 29 12012 much later than the late March date originally scheduled I I I I y I I l gt One possible solution to reforming redistricting is to take the process awa39 f 39 the legislature In Texas the state legislature decides how the district lines shilng drawn and critics often say that this is the only time when politicians choose thl 396 voters and not the other way around Some states such as Arizona have tal I responsibility away from the legislature and created an independdnf redisilfildtiquotie commission Such a commission supporters argue would createfairer district I39 g Texas without the influence of politicians who have a vested interest in 1tI1 ing their seats and political parties According to a May 2011 Texas ecli 40 percent of respondents voiced support in principle for such system wPthlI 30 percent were opposed and 30 percent were unsure of the plan32 Chan 1 thEl system of redistricting will be challenging because legislators ofbo th artief 39 39g tlE benefit from the ability to influence how district lines are drawn pt I Tea y Contemporary Barriers to Voting While days of poll taxes are over there are still barriers to voting in contem porary exas For example in many cities council members are elected atularge Iiij aidl g that there are no individual districts for the city Consider a city that 55 City council seats and is 2039 percent African American 25 percent Latino and 11 pprplent i WliiltE In at lar39ge races the white majority could theoretically capture o t we s 1039council seats If the city had a singlemember district system I ere would be a distinct possibility that at least 4 of the seats would be held by IJJI iOIIEES Aust39pn has at large system of electing city council members but is urren y consi ering c ranging the systemin order 39 quot 391 I I I I I r to rovideforb39t 39 quot 39 and rac1al representation Political campaispghsre effing can Campaign Contributions in Statewide Executive to win supporto 39 evoters e goa o e Of ces up 7 r l A r campaign is to attain sufficient support to Texas Genera Elecuons win the primary election in March and the D r Hr ULLARS PERCENTAGE e cam general election in November Born H osFiCE CANDIDATE CONTRIBUTED CHII VOTEt paigns last a year or more however the more accepted practice is to limit the campaign to a few months before the election I Governor R Perry R 39323540 543796 In recent statewide elections the distinguishing feature 0f th gcampalg S W35 B White o 25291535 4229 the laclt of emphasis on state issues including the pressing issue of the state budget Lieutenant gmemor D Dewmrst m 9 240 480 61 T8 Instead Republicans ran against the national Democratic admmistra otl pilleras L Ciiia vezaThompson 958040 Balsa i quot t emselves from President Obarna and 151 P0 135 r Democratl tried to Eta ce th h quott and electronic Agllcullure GUWmISSEOHB F Toad Staples Hi 1742941 6082 Campaigns involve attempts to reach the voters tintDug pnn Henh Gilbert in ass ass as media the mail doortodoor campaigning speeches to large and small groups p F gt t i J9 coijfee hours and telephone solicitation Costs are enormous During the 20003 Attorney general B frag gbgo R 5 823393m 8405 candidates for statewide races spent as much as 39 million A new record up to or are Hadriafsky D 1135031 3355 that 13930th 501 Campaign Spending W33 set in th 2002 gUbEm tOml race We the CUlero l39e r Susan Samba iRi arsenal 8316 Democrat Tony Sanchez and the Republican Riclt Perry spent a total oi88l glintl None lion In 2006 the amount raised in the gubernatorial race fell to 534 In ll011 Land commissioner Jerry Patterson R 864 ass 51 55 287 percent of which went to the two independent Candidates Camle Keaton Hector Ulrioe D 102548 3528 quot z s a 1 39 i a tributions by Dem 39 a Strathorn and Kinky Friedman In 2010 total campaign C011 L 39 g ocralis seeking the governorship came to nearly 37 million and total contribu Hallmad Com m39ss l ner litigigvi orterg 364488 5940 I 7 EemS are 39 tions by Republicans came to nearly 55 million an amount far larger than the N as 3523 30 million raised by Republicans in 2006 because of the primary challenge to So g g Biggeaj iggi egfjggj gz candidates I Rick Perry by Kay Eailey Hutchison In late October 2014 Eireg Abbott had 468 million to Wendy Davisls 36 million For all statewide offices Repu ican campaign contributions overwhelmed Democratic campaign contributions Total l l contributions in state House and state Senate races were also far greater for R6 l ubhmm than for Democrats There is no questUm than that mo gy is important for candidate success in Texas Candidates must continually raise money by host l p i mg fundraisers with donors making phone calls to potential donors and setting l up websites that make it easy for ordinaryr citizens to contribute see Tables 54 and 55 Candidates who run in Texas for federal of ce such as the US Congress are subject to federal campaign nance laws which are stricter than state laws and i which impose limits for campaign contributions although the federal laws have been greatly weakened by U S Supreme Court decisions that have held parts of the federal lawsto restrict free speech Candidates for state of ces however are subject to state laws enacted in 1991 when the Texas Ethics Commission Amount Raised by All Candidates in Texas 2012 r y ii THlRD F ARTY is a OFFICE DEMOCRAT li REPUBLHCA li I Was established State candidates and lobbyists must le quarterly reports with 38 994 648 54i682 462 0 1 the quotTEC although with exception of judicial campaigns there are no limits to Governor quot i campaign contributions her state races The state imposes a moratorium on contri Judioial 401025 2591108 110 butions to state legislators just prior to the beginning of a legislative session 2138mm 15s In some places in the United States the parties have a major role in the running Other statewide 3150i119 V 7 7 l i 984 25 552 Of Fahtlcal Campaigns That 15 not the case in Texas Here the candidates have the HOUSE 28730507 48634 a i 7 i maior responsibility for campaign strategy for running their campaigns and for Senate 3379924 5991615 2300 7 l i I alsmg plionfey At alias party leaders will try to recruit individuals to run for of ce es ecia i39no can ate 39 quot a r 39 ic Listed by paiitisai party Excludes contributions to candidates not up tar election in sore and onecandidate for I mph g i k I g g I cs volunteer to seek an office or if the candidates appear State senate who Wuhde J i I e wean ones For the most part the bene t of the party to a candidate in Texas SOURCE aaiauiates from Institute on MoneyinStatePolltios is that the party provides the party label under which the candidate runs That ii 150 CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS IN Texas CAMPAIGNS 161 I l I l n Democratic or Republican label is of course important to candidates because l 7 many voters use the party label in casting their votes especially for lowvisibility cand m ICIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIH I i I races The party also contains numerous activists whom the candidate can tap for g jan mu eiylngng Of ce I campaign tasks such as manning phone banks preparing mailings and posting linedreds of thousands of d ggrg campaign ads Additionally the party does provide some support for the candidate 310 millions on their l most commonly through campaigns to get out the vote for the party s candidates Campaigns Thong much money Campaigning in Texas however is generally left up to the candidate and in that 36le l39QlwlISlml dyii tlSliigi effort the parties take a secondary role IIIIQEIQEW Wend time Name recognition is essential for candidates Incumbents hold a distinct advan I Repb f0fi as I tage in this regard Of ceholders have many ways to achieve name visibility They l Farm dries hag all I 1338 i I I a can mail out news releases send newsletters to their constituents appear on radio l Pit BaruB Qna in Ahilaiia ll 5 39 talk shows and give speeches to civic clubs Newspaper coverage and local televi l sion news coverage of the politician can increase name recognition Challengers i have a more difficult time getting this crucial name visibility although new media l sources such as Facebook and Twitter accounts can help both iincumbents and l I i I I challengers gain name recognition especially among young people I l i IlI 9 The case of William R Clements illustrates the importance of name recogni I tion In 1978 William R Clements was a political unknown He spent thousands quot 5 l of dollars of his own fortune to gain name recognition He leased hundreds of i ll 39 l billboards throughout the state Each had a blue background with white letters l I i proclaiming CLEMENTS In the print media early ads bore the simple message 7 I I I l l 1 ELECT CLEMENTS The unprecedented scale of this advertising effort made i u 7 quot l quot 39 I 1 i l Clementss name better known among the voters in Texas This in turn stimulated ii i ll I ll l interest in his campaign s message Clements won the race for governor becoming l H I lI a the first Republican to hold that office in Texas since the end of Reconstruction with had 1 if am organized SUI III d I I I VI l Payments for media ads account for the greatest expense in most campaigns ln dates 31 Showed gr at Sigma 328 mil lmai mdl g it the insurgent Candi l l I I i metropolitan areas television radio and print advertismg are very costly Fullspage I mm televigio adSI of CDIIIIISEI there ma II 331 IE istablished candidates did not I i39 lI 4 39l ads in metropolitan newspapers can cost as much as 40000 Candidates for met I I of established Candidates Inrareag Where I I iona explanations for the strength i III L39 I ropolitan districts in the Texas House of Representatives and Texas Senate need to worked harder in those areas or were bet l were Slmwl139 Pefh ps the candidates It I reach only a small portion of the population but they are forced to purchase ads dates may have had stron err I 39 IEIr organizedIIAnd in some areas candi l l l in media sources that go to hundreds of thousands of people not represented In I NUDE of the insm E I Ema TECDgHHIOI l than their opponentSIsa I l39 I ll rural areas any individual ad is relatively inexpensive However candidates must I the established candidl1eslliail1 Tiles the resources to run tElEVlSiO ails 0111 I advertise in dozens of small newspapers and radio stations and the costs add up I I the established candidates 1656 IIl I191 ylin some media markets It was the suppgrt 2W l Even more important the campaigns must be well designed A slipup in a well H led t0 their vicmrjesI39 It 3 im 5 11 Te areas Where they fall television ads that h ll funded campaign can do great harm as Greg Abbott discovered in his campaign i l Republican primaryI the ef gcfof t l 39 GIFT that S mCEVItIhe data all 17913753 t0 the I I I I for governor 1r ilhile Abbott has made efforts to appeal to the Latino vote his came pare the percentage difference votldsfltic Fifty label is cpntrolled If we com I II I IHI 39I paign received criticism when in FebruaiIy 2014 he referred to law enforcement television ads were run withvotes in areasO Esta IlISheId Candidates in areas where Itquot i tactics in the border region as resembling third world country practices that erode remarkable estabhshed a dida teq re eII 39 IVIDHEIH OI ads Were run the difference 5 939 I the soc1al fabric of our communities A Journalist for the Monitor a newspaper in l more votes in media markets 139 TV 7 Etw en percent and 185 percent l lI i I 39 the Rio Grande Valley called on Abbott to apologize fer his comments Abbott Given the myriad factors II39 3 elf OIugh E tElEVision time l refused to apologize saying his comments were not directed at Latinos but rather of imputi g Egon in th q I a ill13 Explam Electoral success we should beware i 39 I l at the lack of border security in South Texas Abbott sought to repair his relatione l hand the general pattern39 elf llhlci 1 Times solely to television adsI 0 mg other W l ship with Latino voters by emphasizing his Latina wife as the imminent first Latina usodis so powerful that lgl Elalgms Elf VlctOrlY iiil areas Where television was ll It i rst lady of Texas While this slipup did not cost him the election he received 39 39 quot cannot E 131710176421 l I 44 percent of the Latino vote a healthy number for a Republican candidate it I I 7 I ll l still raised larger questions about the state s Republican Party and its relationship llmp rtant Issues Texas campaigng 1quot with the growing Latino vote33 The I EDI I I I I I I I l I h l l Some impressive but limited evidence ind icates that television can be a very l with She Si n5i3120l4 piped Greg libbutt against Wendy Davis in It valuable tool for a Texas political candidate Jfour occasions in the l990s Re L mirror both candidates fou MI 121ch I mid20005 largely in the rearview w l publican Supreme Court candidates were challenged in the primary by candidates become I mm a I I g ISthWSh thEmSElves on iSSUes Davis had IIII l P cnt ecause of her hbuster of an amiabgrtio bill in 2011 but i l ll I Joel v39 ll l l l 162 CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS lN Texas I CAMPAIGNS 133 she wanted to expand her policy portfolio beyond this one issue Abbott had dis tinguished himself as attorney general of Texas by challenging the IClbarna admin istration on a host of policy issues including the Affordable Care Act the Voting Rights Act and gun rights Education policy became an important issue in the 20M elections when Greg Abbott proposed expanding programs for prekindergarten Wendy Davis had al ready proposed a plan that would increase funding for this program but Abbott criticized Davis s plan for not including measures to monitor whether the programs were working Davis countered by accusing Abbott of hypocrisy by defending cuts to preKindergarten programs in his capacity as the state s attorney general The tenor of the education debate in 2014 is a far cry from the debates in 2010 when the debate revolved around mitigating drastic budget cuts to education in the face of a budget shortfall The gubernatorial campaign also highlighted issues that were not typical in previous races Equal pay for equal work became a major issue in April 2014 when the San Antonio Express Notes revealed that female assistant attorneys general in Abbott s of ce were paid approximately 6000 less on average than their male counterparts Abbott responded by asserting that the reason for the discrepancy was that the male employees were on average more experienced Wiendy Davis pressed Abbott on whether he would support her bill guaranteeing equal pay fOr equal work in Texas Abbott claimed that he supported equal pay for equal work but not her bill because of his belief that a new law was not necessaiy It did not help Abbott that his surrogates fumbled some of their explanations as to why Ab bott opposed the legislation For example Abbott supporter and Red State Women PAC chair Cari Christman claimed women were too busy to think about equal pay for equal work and Texas GOP chair Beth Cubriel stated that the reason women are paid less than men is because men are better negotiators These issues have no doubt become more prominent because of Wendy Davis s presence in the gu bernatorial race as the rst female Democratic Party candidate for governor since Ann Richards Gun rights has consistently been a salient issue in Texas especially regarding recent debates about whether rearms should be allowed on college campuses Texas also has a concealed carry law allowing licensed individuals to carry con cealed rearms throughout the state with some exceptions such as bars Even Democrats in Texas do not take positions at odds with the pro gun sentiment in the state Wendy Davis surprised many when she announced that she would back a bill allowing Texans to carry unconcealed pistols on their waists Of course Abe bott also supports the legislation but criticized Davis for her support of allowing private individuals and businesses to block individuals from carrying pistols on their property He also accused Davis of wanting to enact more restrictions on gun owners and compared her to former New York City mayor Michael Bloom berg a strong gun control advocate The National Rifle Association the nation s leading progun lobbying group gave Abbott an A and Davis a D on their gun control policies Immigration policy also became a very salient issue in all of the statewide races Republican candidates for all major elective of ces pledged to enact strict border security measures and spend state resources on keeping illegal immigrants out of the state This emphasis on immigration is a marked change from the 19905 when then governor Bush appealed to the Latino vote in the state For example Ree ELE CTFONS IN TEXAS Immigration is a major issue in Taxes elections Democrats and Republioans have called for reform but their approaches differ strongly publican candidate for Agriculture Commissioner Eric Opiela ran a television ad where he appeared on a farm next to a barbed wire fence announcing that illegal immigrants need to go to the back of the line and that there should be no amnesty for illegal immigrants He lost the Republican primary with only l7 percent of the vote More notorious however in his positions on immigration was lieutenant gubernatorial candidate Dan Patrick who said in a debate that he wanted to stop the invasion of illegal immigrants to Texas Patrick challenged Lieutenant Govers nor David Dewhurst from the right by arguing that Dewhgurst was not suf ciently conservative on this issue Land commissioner Jerry Patterson another candidate for lieutenant governor accused Patrick of hypocrisy by revealing that Patrick had knowingly hired an undocumented immigrant for his sports bar business back in the 1990s Patrick denied that he knew the individual in question was in the coona try illegally but it did not seem to hurt Patrickjs candidacy as he came in rst place in the Republican primary held in March 20M Tax policy also became a state issue especially in the comptroller s race be tween Sen Glenn Hegar RKaty and Mike Collier DeHouston Collier a Certi ed Public Accountant ran campaign ads claiming that Hegar wanted to abolish the state property tax and increase sales taxes Since Texas does not have a state ins come tax property taxes are somewhat higher than in other states The state relies on property taxes to fund public education and sales taxes for other state spend ing Sales taxes in Texas usually average 825 percent on most items with the ex ception of medicine and groceries Increasing sales taxes often disproportionately affects lowerincome Texans since a higher percentage of their income is spent CAMPAFGNS l l I l l l on purchasing goods and services Hegar ran a campaign touting his conservative gent senator Dan Patriclt challenged Dewh t f V a p l 39l credentials and his desire for lower taxes in general and was ultimately elected runoff and defeated him in the prirnar IS h mmthe flghhfm cecl him into a IF I comptroller of public accounts in the November election 39 own money in the SenatE prime 39 HEW quotHISt had1 ve395t3d mil110115 Of his l quotl l Although Texas once trit rdltd3 l ls 39h1d for mn ecuon l l I I right to vote through 011 tagies angel2 t e franchise primarily by limiting the l a a H Ill I p I V I V I I r l i expand the franchise through the mUmIEVZETEEZmdeQm yam it has le d t0 V r It 0 Thlnking Critically about Elections in Texas SEEe Patticipation a Texas a the lowest a a natidh 3311 lel ung39ftt V E n id 4 I r was on 7 v V i H quot I r THOU in p ll l A Elections in Texas are essential to the state s functioning democracy it is important I 2010 That isyprobjibllrleedfghllie Eaters Whilh was less than the tumgu t in i a I l H to think critically about how elections are structured and who benefits from the 39 political culture but it may 3156 be digginjfggphlf Of TEES ViteTS and Texas s ill H types of districts that are created by the state legislature Because of the single I the vast number of elections and the lar a la Edmng leclfie s in TEXEIS 1 member district system third parties are disadvantaged in state politics and this i for of ce Participation in El lctio s I I he 31 Of luw WSlbi ty candidates I has important implications for how policy is made i 39 termined by who is elected to Of celsFlmpD ant becapse public policies are d3 pi i i v The state has a formal process for candidates who want to serve their fellow it higher education that affect all colle Sigxaltllpieg policies related pro funding for ili 39 I citizens in elective of ce The candidate must rst run in a party primary then i of cials and the people they appoi tgh 3181 S 335 are dependent on elected l if the candidate does not receive a majority of the votes he or she must run in a new voter identi cation law will have an imEmma m5 tgvbe SEE Whether the state s j I39h 1 runoff primary ideally the battles of primaries and runoff primaries will be fore I I paCt on miter turnout in the Slam i i i ll gotten and the party will come toge her in support of the nominee in order to quotI 3 l n win the election However what often happens is that the primaries and runoffs 39 I H create enormous con icts and divisions within the party that are not healed The l 1 I opposition then exploits those party divisions so that their candidate can win the 39 I J 1 N l election ll f l 39 ill Redistricting in Texas has been very controversial since the passage of the Voting l j l I l I Rights Act in lQGS Texas has traditionally been subject to additional constraints ll 1 i ll when it draws new district lines and the federal courts have stepped in to make quot39 Y 3 i sure that the voting rights of African Americans and Latinos have not diminished 1 h M However this is no longerthe case Until Congress acts to address the Supreme j l l39if 393 l Court s ruling Texas is no longer subject to preclearance of its legislative districts l I p l t Election results are greatly influenced by the kind of districts that are drawn which l l i 139 if i 5 is why it is so important to pay close attention to this process which occurs by law lgquot will i at least every ten years Districts do not just arise out of thin air politicians create y Til 39I them to advancetheir own interests as well as their party39s goals 39 i I While Republicans have been winning statewide elections the growing Latino if H Il I ll population and increased diversi cation of the state may change this Wendy D a l ll ll 1 vis had hoped to capitalize on the changing demographics of the state in her bid quoty ll 1 for governor but could not overcome countervailing winds against her candidacy l l I quotl including the state s entrenched conservatism and the national tilt in favor of Re l ill I publicans While not as strongly Democratic as African Americans Latinos in Texas i ll II are more likely to identify as Democrats As more Latinos register to vote and parr Ii l 39 ticipate in state elections Texas may once again become a competitive two party l p in l state but as the 2014 elections demonstrate the Republicans currently dominate f state politics l 3 MI l Campaigns especially statewide campaigns are very expensive For the most 39 l l part the candidates themselves must raise the money necessary to win an election Gubernatorial campaigns can cost 40 million or more One effect of the high cost 39 v I of campaigns in Texas is that candidates are often very wealthy individuals will i i ing to use their own money in their campaigns Wealthy individuals however will if I not always prevail at the ballot box Consider former lieutenant governor David i p l i Dewhurst His bruising loss to Senator Ted Cruz in the state Republican primary l I g I for a US Senate seat in 2012 left him vulnerable in his bid for re election lnsur I I1 I l l H 39l i l I i 166 CHAPTER 5 ELECTIONS IN TEXAS 7 r l p THINKING csmoanv asour ELECTIONS N Texas 1639 vi
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