Someday soon I will write a very thorough piece about why we should all pay attention to judicial elections. For today, I will just tell you that as a Bexar Co. voter, you're going to have to wade through several of these elected positions as you pull the lever Nov. 2, so you might as well start paying attention now.
I looked up the 15 or so contested county judge and justice of the peace races and each candidate's July 15 campaign finance filing. Not nearly as exciting as the Guv race money, or even the DA money, but at this level, these reports can help separate the serious contenders from those that don't stand a chance.
For instance, it looks like Republican Jason Pulliam, an African-American former JAG lawyer, is making a concerted effort to take on Democrat Ina Castillo in the race for County Court 5. They raised roughly the same amount of money in the past six months, over $9,000 each. While Pulliam can count Red McCombs and the Republican Women of Alamo City as steady backers, Castillo has attracted donations from all over the map, including a member of the District Attorney's office, Peter Holt, and U.S. Rep. Charlie Gonzalez. That's a serious race.
For comparison, assistant DA John Fleming, running as a Republican, only raised $550 in six months (yet somehow won the primary), while incumbent Democrat Al Alonso made the genius move to host a fishing tourney fundraiser in Rockport, contributing mightily to the $14,775 he raised in the same period.
Speaking of the District Attorney's office, assistant DA Jason Wolff must be very popular there, or else the office must hate 20 year vet Judge H. Paul Canales, no fewer than nine employees at the DA ponied up cash for co-worker Wolff, a Republican running to unseat Canales in the County Court district 2 spot, helping him outraise Canales nearly three times over. However, Canales has amassed a large warchest over the years and still has $20,000 cash-on-hand to blow Wolff out of the water.
Full rundown of the candidates, even those who didn't file campaign finance reports this period (cough, libertarians, cough), to come soon.
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