Jones, Lovell under fire in runoff elections

December 11, 2009 5:57:33 PM PST
An incumbent city council member is pushing to keep her seat, but she's running into opposition from other members on the council including someone in her own party. On Saturday, voters will decide if Jolanda Jones stays on City Council. At least four council members have endorsed Jones' challenger, one even sending out a mailer against her campaign. It's making things heated as the runoff campaign comes to a close.

When polls open Saturday morning, incumbent council members Jolanda Jones and Sue Lovell will be on the ballot, each in their own runoff election. While many expected Lovell to send out campaign mailers, no one expected her to send out one attacking Jolanda Jones.

"I don't have a comment one way or another about any of my colleagues because my campaign and my office are only concerned about constituents," said Jones.

While Jones doesn't want to address the flyer, others can't stop. KTRK Political Consultant Dr. Richard Murray says since both women are Democrats and already on City Council, Lovell's attack mailer could back fire.

"In my judgment, it was a political mistake of major proportions," said Dr. Murray.

Council Member Lovell refused to talk to us on camera about the mailer she sent. But she's not alone. Four other members of City Council, including Anne Clutterbuck, and Mike Sullivan, have all publicly endorsed Jones' opponent, Jack Christie.

"She continues to say she represents all Houstonians, well, she doesn't represent my constituents. My constituents have said it loud and clear that they're not happy with her," said Sullivan.

Dr. Murray says the other council members are all Republicans, so it's natural they would support a Republican candidate, but for fellow Democrat Lovell to attack Jones is a rarity.

"We don't do politics that way in America, because it doesn't work," said Dr. Murray.

Even though the final decision will be made by voters, Jones says she's not worried.

"The thing that motivated me to run is that government is responsible for the people," she said.

Both Jones and Lovell are facing opponents in Saturday's runoff election and will have to win to return to City Council.


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