On December 19, Texas’s 38 presidential electors will assemble in Austin to cast their votes for president. Typically, all 38 would vote for the candidate who won the popular vote in Texas—in this case, Donald Trump. But 2016, clearly, is not a normal year. During the general election, at least three Texas GOP electors publicly expressed ambivalence about voting for Trump—Chris Suprun, Marty Rhymes, and Art Sisneros. Last week, Suprun said he would be supporting Trump after all. Rhymes followed suit on Monday. That leaves Sisneros, a forty-year-old industrial welding supplies salesman from Dayton, a town of about 7,000 in Liberty County, northeast of Houston. Contacted by phone on Wednesday, Sisneros said that he’s still considering his vote. “I honestly still have not made my…View Original Post
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It’s been a week since Donald Trump’s stunning victory, and the shock hasn’t really worn off. Nor is there any more certainty about what kind of president Trump will be. Given Trump’s lack of a core ideology and his shifting positions, it’s impossible to confidently predict how he will attempt to govern. Some pundits are predicting that Trump will be fairly successful, and others fear a descent into fascism. At this point, either scenario seems plausible. As for how Trump authored perhaps the greatest election upset in American history, I don’t have much to add to the explanations offered in seemingly every corner of the Internet. It was a relatively low-turnout election: About 57 percent of eligible voters came to the polls this year, a…View Original Post
Like many Americans, I’ve spent much of Election Day thus far keeping a close eye on the news and a few developments are worth highlighting. First, real-time analyses of the results to this point, from Votecastr, would seem to augur well for Hillary Clinton. So too does the news that Donald Trump has filed a lawsuit alleging that officials in in Clark County, Nevada, kept the polls in that “Democratic stronghold” open for an extra two hours on the last day of early voting. To be clear, Texans: the polls will be open until 7 p.m. today. And if you are in line at that time, you will be able to vote. I’ll relay further developments as they come along, and, in the interim, I…View Original Post
At long last, Election Day has arrived, and Texans can be confident in this much, at least: by the end of the day we should, God willing, know who the next president will be. Some voters are still hoping for a civic Hail Mary—courtesy of faithless electors, perhaps, or the voters of Utah—but realistically, it will be Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Either way, roughly half of Americans will be unhappy with the results and either way, millions of Americans will believe that the presidential election was “rigged”—metaphorically, literally, or both. All of us, then, should be worried. We are a deeply divided nation. The things that divide us will also interfere with efforts to heal the wounds. The recriminations and revisionism have already begun.…View Original Post
On Wednesday my colleague Dave Mann argued that Texas’s newfound status as a “battleground state” is nothing more than a fluke, and he counseled Democrats that it would be unwise to be overly optimistic about whether Donald Trump’s ongoing struggles here this year are a sign that Texas is, at long last, succumbing to the inexorable demographic trends we’ve all been hearing about for years. Needless to say, I agree with him. When I predicted back in May that Trump’s nomination could put Texas in play, my reasoning was that both Trump and Hillary Clinton have certain “Texas-specific idiosyncrasies” that might come back to haunt him—and help her, if Texas Democrats could be persuaded to compete. My pessimism on the latter point was, evidently, justified.…View Original Post