Russia Invades Ukraine

Vlad the (Impudent) Impaler
Vlad the (Impudent) Impaler

Have you seen this guy? Of course you have. It’s ol’ Vlad. The Putinator. The Russian President for Life. Well, about 10 days ago he went off his meds and attacked – excuse me, launched a ‘special military operation’ – in the sovereign nation of Ukraine with soldiers, tanks, bombs, missiles, etc.

In the past 10 days over 1 million people have crossed the border to neighboring Poland, Romania, Moldova and Hungary. Estimates range from 136 to 2,000 Ukrainians have been killed so far.

Some of the Ukrainians fought back with what else – the quintessential weapon of choice – Molotov cocktails made by an Ukrainian brewery.

The 2022 Primary Election in Texas

It’s midterm election season once again, and somethings have changed: the Texas Legislature redrew district maps. I was in US Congressional District 17, now District 10. My State House District stayed 14. My State Senate District stayed 5. I was State Board of Education District 8, now District 10.

The Primary Election this year is March 1 (early voting starts February 14), and the General Election will be November 8 (early voting starts October 24). As usual, the Texas Tribune has a useful primary election guide.

U.S. Senate

Ted Cruz (R) – Next election 2024

John Cornyn (R) – Next election 2026

U.S. House of Representatives (District 10)

Michael McCaul (R-Incumbent)

Linda Nuno (D)

Governor

Greg Abbott (R-Incumbent)
Paul Belew (R)
Danny Harrison (R)
Kandy Kaye Horn (R)
Don Huffines (R)
Rick Perry (R) (Not the former Governor)
Chad Prather (R)
Allen West (R)

Inocencio “Inno” Barrientez (D)
Michael Cooper (D)
Joy Diaz (D)
Beto O’Rourke (D)
Rich Wakeland (D)

Lieutenant Governor

Trayce Bradford (R)
Todd M. Bullis (R)
Daniel Miller (R)
Dan Patrick (R-Incumbent)
Aaron Sorrells (R)
Zach Vance (R)

Michelle Beckley (D)
Carla Brailey (D)
Mike Collier (D)

Attorney General

George P. Bush (R)
Louie Gohmert (R)
Eva Guzman (R)
Ken Paxton (R-Incumbent)

Mike Fields (D)
Rochelle Garza (D)
Joe Jaworski (D)
Lee Merritt (D)
S. “T-Bone” Raynor (D)

Texas Senate (District 5)

Charles Schwertner (R-Incumbent)

Texas House of Representatives (District 14)

John Raney (R-Incumbent)
John Harvey Slocum (R)

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Can Texas Secede in 2021

Kyle Biedermann [R-Fredericksburg] introduced HB 1359 on January 26, 2021, to the 87th Legislative session of Texas.

Introduction:
Relating to proposing a referendum to the people of the State of Texas on the question of whether this state should leave the United States of America and establish an independent republic.

This isn’t the first time Texans wanted to secede – even I lived through a vote – but alas, we can’t.

U.S. Capitol Mobbed

Police with guns drawn watch as protesters try to break into the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

At about 2:30 PM on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, unarmed protesters mobbed the U.S. Capital building as the Electoral College vote was being counted.

Pro-Trump protestors breached the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday afternoon, violently clashing with law enforcement as lawmakers were gathered inside to formalize President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in November’s presidential election.

Source: APnews.com

The fighting came shortly after Trump addressed thousands of his supporters, riling up the crowd with his baseless claims of election fraud.

UPDATE 1/9/2021

Trump riots: Democrats plan to introduce article of impeachment

Source: BBC

Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats plan to introduce an article of impeachment – the charge of “incitement of insurrection” – on Monday, January 11, 2021, just 9 days before Joe Biden’s inauguration.

President Tests Positive for COVID-19

Just 32 days until the election, and 2 days after the first presidential debate of 2020, the President and the First Lady both test positive for COVID-19. The President tweeted the announcement late Thursday (10/1/2020) night.

Administration officials were surprise it hadn’t happened sooner.

CBS News White House correspondent Weijia Jiang reported that administration officials had expressed surprise for weeks that the virus hadn’t been detected among White House officials, given Mr. Trump’s own unenthusiastic embrace of measures recommended by senior health officials.

The president has often flouting his own administration’s guidelines on social distancing, mask-wearing and not gathering in large groups.

Source: CBS News

Stock markets around the world reacted negatively to the news; risk aversion set in.

Later in the morning, Biden and his wife, tested negative for the virus.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, tested negative for coronavirus on Friday morning, the Bidens’ doctor said, following President Donald Trump’s disclosure that he had tested positive just days after the first debate.

Source: CNN

Terrible Trifecta

On Friday, September 18, 2020, US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dead at age 87 – just 45 days before Election Day – thus leaving a power vacuum in the highest court of the land. (There are now 5 conservative and 3 liberal justices.) Thus the stage is set for a terrible trifecta: a Supreme Court battle, a contentious presidential election, and a worsening (COVID-19) pandemic.

Brexit schmexit

Britain’s exit from the European Union is finally here. At the stroke of midnight, Brussels time, 5 PM Central US, on Friday, January 31, 2020, the deed is done.

Britain formally exits the European Union on Friday night, casting off from the Continent after nearly half a century and ending a debate that had convulsed the country for more than three years.

Source: New York Times: Britain’s Brexit Shrug: Let’s Just Get On With It

By the sounds of it – and going by how long it has dragged on – Britons are tired of it all and just want to get on with life. Not so fast. For all this time – time supposedly used to negotiate trade deals and legal separation agreements – it seems like very little was done: for the next 11 months they’ll work out trade relations.

Texans Will Soon Carry Guns During Disasters

Earlier this month, the Texas House passed H.B. 1177, a bill that would allow people who are evacuating after a disaster declaration to carry a gun without a license up to 7 days.

On Friday, May 24, the Senate passed their version which shortens the time period to 48 hours, but allows the governor to extend that time if needed.

The new law has to pass the House once more and go to the governor for signature. If signed, it would take effect September 1, 2019. The 86th Legislature runs from Jan. 8 to May 27 (today).

As a licensed-to-carry gun owner, I don’t know how I feel about letting unlicensed people walking around with guns during a stressful time. (Guns would be allowed in shelters too – if the shelter owner allows it.) I guess the legislature is trying to extend the castle doctrine during a disaster to stop looting and allow people to travel with protection (?).