Despite being a blind hermit, I have an amazing number of contacts with the race for Congress for the `16th District in Texas (voters for which come almsot entirely from El Paso County, which is not ture of the otehr Congressional district which includes voters from El Paso).
I was a relatively hyoung lawyer (under 40) hwen I met Silvestre Reyes. Reyes was using the reputatin he gained as a "tough" Border Patrol commander (or whatever) in El Paso to run for Congress for the first time. Reyes was apparently responsible for the strategy whihc PARKED border patrol vehicles at measured intervls along the Mexican border in lthe El Paso area--sort of a "living fence" where there was no "crossing' not under observation from one or more bordfer patorl units. Reyes was actualy given credit for doing someting abut illegal immigratin, even though it was a very BORING and manpower intensive way to keep tis area of the border under control. This was before El Paso Democrats, and Democrats everywhere, chose to IDENTIFY Hipanci voters with ILLEGAL immigration: as if Hispanics were mainly the product of illegal immigration. I have always found this strange: this idea that Hsispanics WANT to be identified with illegal immigrants. I don't think that is true. What is true is that Hispanics, becaasuse so many are recent immigrants who did not come to this country with a whole lot of oney, are generally POORER than some other ethnic groups. This is what cauess them to TEND to (wrongly) vote for Democrats as the people who promise to BRIBE them. What they, ansd so many others, do not undrstand is that voting for peole who KEEP YOU DEPENDENT on them is a lsing game, in the end. This explains why El Paso generally votes Democratic, especially for Congress and President. Further, El Paso tends to keep the SAME person in Congress for a LONG time. This was somewhere around 30 years ago that Silvestre Reyes ran for the first time (easy to look up how many two year terms he has had).
Enter my ex-wife. No, she was not a real power in El Paso politics. Nor was, or is, she a big Democrat. Her older brother here, in fact, is one of teh most rabid gOP voters--along with his wife--that you will find. But my wife had an aunt, or maybe a great aunt, who held one of those "coffee) events for Silvestre Reyes. My wife's aunt invited our famiy to the "event" (very few people attended), and my wife dragged me there. It was plesant enough, but Silvestre Reyes was never what you wuld call an intellectual heavyweight. He seemed to want to foolow in the footsteps of Richarfd White, the previous long-term El Paso Congressman, who had basicaly took up space in Congresss while avoding worknig for a living (voting the Democratic party line). Richard White ws ot an intellectual heavyweight either. Reyes pretty much achieved his objective of emulating Richard White, with perhaps a little extra feeding on the public tit thrown in.
That has been the recent "scandal" involving Reyes,. He has been alleged to USE his long-time position to LINE THE POCKETS of himself and his family. I attended a "graduatin party" for my nephew over Memorial Day weekend. I laready knew that Reyes was in a fight for his political life with a man from an old-time El Paso political family named "Beto O'Rouke". Now MOST El Paso Democrats have been at least on the edge of SCANDAL over the past decade or more, as many have been indicted andor convicted of various kinds of graft. Many more have been rumored to be lunder FBI investiagatin at one time or another. I believe that included Pat O'Rouke, former El Paso Country official. But Silvestre Reyes had obviusly worn out his welcome with Democrats: a walking advertisement for term limits. Beto O'Rouke tok him on in the Democratic primary, and APPEARS to have won (barely avoiding a runoff). At my nephew's graduation party, I had an indicatino that this was going to happen. There were some "connected" Democrats there--lathouhg not real heavy hitters--who were talking about how Democrats had to "get rid" of Silvestre Reyes, because he was a THIEF. The fact is that Democrats have controlled El Paso politics too long, and think the government is "theirs" to do with as they will. That explains why there have been so many sccandals in the past decade or more in the El Paso area. Yes, it would surelly havapen, and has, with GOP politicians as well (when they control offices for too long). Nope. The GOP has NO credibility on term limits, and it is one of the many reasons I do not call myself a member of the GOP. Well, the Democrats at my nephew's graduation party (from medical school, as he is heading off to be an intern in Baton Rouge) were RIGHT: Democrats had pretty much decided to get rid of Silvestre Reyes because they thought he had been obviusly lining his own pockets (or at least pockets of associates and members of his family). You can look at the archives of the El Paso Times if you want to know the exact allegatinos.
Wait, though. This does not end my connection with the participants int he 16th District race. Look att the GOP NOMINEE. Althoguh I have lost contact with her in recent years, Barbara Carrasco used to work as the bookkeeper of the law firm where I was a partner ("Schwartz, Earp, McClure, Cohen and Stewart"). . I knew her pretty well, although almost exclusively in a business context. I dealt with her on a daily basis. I can assure you, and everyone, that she would be a better member of Congress than Silvestre Reyes, simply on character and intellectual grounds. Barbara was empllyed by our law firm for several lyears, before moving on. The exact dates MAY well be on her website, at which I have not even yet looked (although I am relatively certain I will support her for Congress--as if theat will help her any). Yes, I am relatively sure that she will make a better person in Congress than Beto O'Rouke, beyond the obvius fact that O'Rourke is an Obama Democrat. But I did not even know that Barbara was the GOP nominee until TODAY. Yes, I saw Barbar's name as running for the nomination, and as having gotten the nomination (unopposed, I think). But I simply did not connect THIS "Barbara Carrasco" with the Barbara Carrasco with whom I had worked for enough time to know here pretty well. The only reason I found out was that Sylvia, my only close--albeit platonic--female friend, called me all excited that Barbara had won the GOP nomination. Sylvia had recognized the name, and checked the biography, although Sylvia had not known Barbara was running. Sylvia was first an employee of the law frim, and then my personal legal secretary. She worked for the law firm at the same time that Barbara was there (working a total of more than five yearss for me in one capacity or another--I have known her some 23 years now). Sylvia even once took a trip with Barbara into Canada. They were friends, although Sylvia has lost contact in recent years. Sylvia was excited to see that Barbara was the GOP nominee, and immediately called me. Sylvia and I still talk by phone fairly regularlyl, In fact, she tired to KILL me tonight by taking me on an uphill walk of about 4 miles, for the 4th day in a row. Sylvia is 48,. I am 65. As I say, she is tryiing to KIL me. She is USING me because she is on this campaign to lose weight, probably inspired by Michelle Obama. I digress.
In any event, I am glad Barbara is the GOP nominee. She faces an uphill battle in a heavily Democratic city. I doubt if Barbara has, or will have, a whole lot of resources to throw at this uphill race. Still, I think the GOP NEEDS candidates like Barbara, and I hope the sttate/national party will at lest give her some support. She has MY endorsement, for what it is wroht. She would probably disavow many things said in thsi blog, and I am absolutely certain she has never read this blog. However, I do hope she runs an aggressive camaign of IDEAS (12-year term limits for ALL non-civil service Federal officials, including Federal judges, would not be a bad place to start in terms of ideas).
Good luck, Barbara, if you see this sometime. It would be an obvius mistake for me to even try to involve myself in your campaign. Read this blog, if you doubt that. You might pay special attentin to those times I say that women should never have gotten the vote. Yep. I will probably make a minor contributin to Barbar's campaign. But she will ahve to run and finance the campaign without much help from me. Not that I am implying that she would accept me as some sort of late addition to her campaign staff. Not bloody likely. Barbara is smarter than that. It is always possible I will get a chance to tak to Barbara, if ony through Sylvia. If so, I will act as a "REPORTER", and report to you in that capacity the 'on the record" parrts of her campaign she is willing to talk to me aobut. As stated, Barbara faces an uphill battle, but that is NOT the way to WIN (that attitude). Democrats in El Paso are scandal plagued, and Barbara may well have a chance IF she takes it to this Beto O'Rourke in an aggressive, "Scott Brown-type" campaign. Or maybe like Rick Santorum's "shoe leather" campaign in Iowa. It CAN be done. That, of course, does not mean it will be done (or that Barbara is at fault if it does nto happen, bother than not being good enough to pul off a miracle).
P.S. No proofreading or spell checking (bad eyesight). Just think of how MANY walking, talking ADVERTISMENTS there are out there for term limits. Yes, VOTERS should impose thme, to the extent they can, if politicians refuse to do it. In this case, voting in Beto O'Rourke would be just the same as voting in that younger Silvestre Reyes. Apart from ideology, voters of El Paso need to let the DEMOCRATIC PARTY know that they cannot be taken for granted, and merely USED to obtain a lifelong sinecure for Democrats wanting to live off the government. By the way, I don't know anything to discredit BARBARA--more the opposite. Barbara, of course, knows mroe than enough toDISCRFREDIT ME--as if this blog were not enoguh. So those of you who worry that I might enter the political arena--have nightmares aobut it: DON'T.