Welcome to 2012!

2012 will be a big year in politics. Presidential election years always stand apart as the most exciting time frame in American politics. The President of the United States is the one office that unites, or divides, the entire country. From New York to California, all Americans will have the opportunity to choose who leads the nation.

Primaries actually begin this week. Of course, President Obama is basically assured the Democratic nomination so the game to watch will be the Republicans. They have transitioned through the “flavor of the week” for so many months now that it will be fascinating to see who finally secures the nomination. Mitt Romney has withstood all the challengers to date and appears to be in a good position going into this week’s Iowa primaries. The question lingers if someone might still try to enter the race.

In Texas, we face Primary elections in early April for seats that are yet to be determined. The redistricting struggles are still unresolved but should straighten out by the end of January. We will then have a better idea of the next Texas Legislature and how it might reflect the State’s voting and/or ethnic patterns. It is the legislative races that will be the primary focus. There is still no chance that the Democrats can retake the House or Senate but will they gain or lose seats?

At the local level, County officials are up for election. There is little anticipated change at Commissioners Court and the County Judge is not up for election this year. The County Attorney, the Sheriff, and a few other offices are up for review by the voters. The two aforementioned offices are held by Democrats for the first time in many years and it will be interesting to see if they are able to hold their seats. The race to watch will be the race for District Attorney. The Republican incumbent, Pat Lykos, has faced an on-going political battle for the last several years. Her truest challenge will likely be in the Republican primary.

On January 3, seven new Council Members will be sworn into office. It will be fascinating to watch the new Council and to see the direction they offer for the City. Mayor Parker will continue with her focus on financial stability and improved quality of life.

I will ponder all of it and offer the best analysis I can and have fun along the way. Stay tuned and resolve to check-in regularly.

Happy New Year and buckle-in for an exciting year of politics!

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