KATY, TX (Covering Katy) -With the Republican primary election for House District 132 in the rear view mirror and the runoff 3 months away the candidate who came in second place is beginning the process of defining herself and her opponent. Ann Hodge says she’s the only candidate left in the race who knows the challenges Katy faces because she’s lived here for three decades and her opponent just moved to Katy then quickly announced he was running to represent the area in the Texas Legislature.
On Monday Ann Hodge fired the first salvo with an open letter to her supporters. In the letter she revealed her strategy for victory, make sure voters know her opponent became a resident of Katy hours before registering to run for office.
Covering Katy contacted the campaign of Mike Schofield 6 days ago but there has been no response. In researching his residence we found he rents a home in Katy off South Mason Road and Cimarron. It’s easy to find with two Schofield campaign signs placed near the street.
Schofield’s decision to live in a rental home instead owning a home would have no bearing on this race had he lived in the community for many years, but it is allowing Hodge to make the case that he came to Katy only to run for office and will likely leave Katy should he not win the seat being vacated by Bill Callegari.
Even though Schofield has few if any ties to Katy he was able to win more than half the early vote and nearly won the election without a runoff. Political observers say he spent an enormous amount of time walking the Katy and Cypress neighborhoods and meeting voters face to face.
Below is the open letter to supporters Hodge released Monday.
want to express my tremendous gratitude for your support in the March 4 primary. Your hard work helped us advance to the May 27th runoff, which gives Republican voters a final say as to who represents them.
We came in second in the primary. There is a long list of runoff winners who finished second on primary night. In fact, if you look at the 2010 and 2012 Republican runoffs for state representative, the 2nd place finisher won the runoff – and therefore the Republican nomination – 62 percent of the time (13 out of 21 runoff races.)
In fact, Bill Callegari wouldn’t be our state representative had he given up after a second place finish in the 2000 primary. But he didn’t, and he went on to win the runoff and represent us admirably for 14 years.
The stage is set for a vigorous runoff contest between someone who has been a part of this community for more than three decades, bringing jobs and infrastructure projects to the Katy area, and a candidate who moved here to run. In fact, my opponent launched his campaign one day after he was eligible to vote in District 132. When voters were informed of this late during early voting, his percentage dropped about 15 points on election day.
This is the first time the runoff will take place a full 12 weeks after the primary. It’s practically a new campaign with twice as long for Republican voters to make a final decision on their state representative than just four years ago. That gives us plenty of time to build a grassroots campaign of support for victory on May 27th. I ask for your help in replenishing our bank account, and in fighting this fight over the next three months.
You deserve representation that doesn’t need to learn your issues, but has lived them. I have done that as Katy Area Chamber President, working to bring infrastructure projects to our area such as the Grand Parkway extension from I-10 to Highway 290, fighting for jobs economic development projects, and working with area educators to ensure our high school graduates are either college-ready or career-ready.
I may be running against the insiders who handpick candidates through election slates, but this seat doesn’t belong to the insiders – it belongs to you. I will be a true representative for Cypress and Katy. I won’t owe anyone but you, the people of this area. That’s how it should be.