In light of these maps, many White Rock area residents will now find themselves in the new District 100. I look forward to working closely with these new communities.
Because getting to know my constituents is the most important part of holding office, I can only say that I am happy – relieved, even – to simply have maps on the table. So mark your calendars: primary elections will, in all probability, be held on May 29. While I am confident that this date will stick, a curve ball (or two) is not out of the question. The major obstacle still threatening to derail our election schedule is the D.C. court’s preclearance ruling. If this court’s findings are wildly out of sync with the San Antonio court’s interim maps, then we may be forced to go back to the drawing board. Of course, this would further throw off our elections.
To offer a little background on what’s been going on, the D.C. court is the ultimate arbiter when it comes to the Voting Rights Act. The argument made by the plaintiffs hinged on this law. They stated that the Legislature’s maps did not take into account minority population growth. The San Antonio court originally agreed, drawing maps accordingly. The state, however, successfully appealed to the Supreme Court, which ordered that the San Antonio court did not give enough deference to the Legislature’s maps – maps that reflected state policy decisions to preserve majority power. Because that is not illegal, the Supreme Court essentially ruled that a court is not a lawmaking body, and therefore could not drastically deviate from the policy intentions of the state, but could only remedy violations of the Voting Rights Act.
The San Antonio court then decided to allow the two sides an opportunity to work out their differences on their own. When the compromise process ultimately failed to complete the job, the San Antonio court was compelled to intervene to ensure an expedient primary date.
As a result of all the confusion, many voters have been concerned about the whereabouts of their Voter Registration Certificates. Due to district uncertainty, these have not yet been mailed, but will be on April 25. So, be watching for your new yellow Voter Registration Certificate soon after.
Now that the maps are out and campaigns are underway, I urge all of you to check the website http://gis1.tlc.state.texas.us. to find out if your district has changed. Because we are here to represent you, please contact us at 512-463-0586 with your concerns so that together we can make next session a success.