Former Pasadena Mayor and current Harris County Precinct 2 candidate John Manlove was the speaker at this week’s meeting of the Downtown Houston Pachyderm Club. Mr. Manlove called it a 2-fer as he brought along his wife Gina to tell the audience about her project called the Texas Memorial Illumination at San Jacinto.
He started by talking about his path to owning his own business, then switched to campaign mode, hitting first on the themes of local politics and safety. He stated that Precinct 2 is important because winning it can bring the balance of power at the Commissioners Court back to conservative leadership. He noted that he was running against the very liberal Adrian Garcia and that he was contacted by political and community leaders seeking a strong candidate. He was proud of the fact that he was the top fund raiser on the July campaign finance reports.
My impression of his campaign theme is that he is going to highlight the current cultural shift that we are seeing as the left moves further left and the right moves further right. He talked at length about social issues, saying that “social equities equals quotas, which the Supreme Court outlawed in 1978”. I assume that he was referring to the Bakke decision but he didn’t say that so I can’t say for certain. Other slogans he used were “we need less Critical Race Theory and more Grade Point Average” and “restorative justice equals get out of jail free”. As a mayor of a small city in Precinct 2, I don’t know how important the focus on the social justice issues is. From my perspective, Commissioner Garcia has done a pretty good job when he focuses on the precinct. Obviously, I don’t like his votes when he agrees with Judge Hidalgo and Commissioner Ellis to blame “whitey” for everything but again, on the precinct level Garcia has done okay.
Continuing his attack on the current court, he said that on the public safety side they are focusing on what’s important to the criminal and not the average citizen. He said that crime was up 42% but I didn’t catch whether he was referring to Harris County as a whole or Precinct 2 specifically. He also said that by taking $20 million away from the Constables, the court was defunding the police. He brought up the fact that under prior commissioner courts, they allocated more money for unincorporated areas in Precincts 3 and 4 but that under the current liberal leadership, they took money away from the unincorporated areas and gave it to Commissioner Rodney Ellis’ Precinct 1. He said that 60% of the reallocated funds are going to Ellis’ precinct because they are using a “social vulnerability index“.
He ended his talk by saying that liberty has to be taught, pointing to his grandson, and then segued to Gina Manlove’s project.
Her project seems pretty cool if they can pull it off. From their website:
Twenty-one thousand five hundred luminaires will light the fields of San Jacinto Battleground in remembrance of those Texans who have given their lives in armed conflict from the Texas Revolution through Afghanistan. Each candle represents a life given in battle but also represents a beloved son, a daughter, a sister or a spouse. People will experience this event in various ways. To some it will offer solace, to others deep emotions will be revisited. But it will be inspiring to everyone.
Click over to the Texas Memorial Illumination at San Jacinto for more information.
After her presentation, Mr. Manlove took questions from the audience. I pointed out that he wasn’t running against Commissioner Garcia just yet, that he had to get through the primary first. At this time, the only other candidate to file in the primary is former Precinct 2 Commissioner Jack Morman. I asked him what made him a better choice than Jack and pointed out that Jack has $185k cash on hand vs his $53k. He thinks that he has more political experience than Jack with being a mayor and appointed commissioner on several boards, including NASA, Port Houston, the San Jacinto Monument and others. As for funding, he has several large donors and doesn’t think funding will be an issue. I looked at his July finance report and all but one of the contributions were $1,000 or more, with two of them being $10,000. Also, I’m not an expert at this but I think perhaps they made a mistake by listing a $10,000 contribution from Mr. Manlove and also a $10,000 loan from him. The totals on the report add up to only one $10,000 transaction from him but like I said, I’m not an expert.
Mr. Manlove had good energy and said that he was focusing on building a community the conservative, Biblical, family values way.
If you want to find out more about Mr. Manlove’s campaign, here are the links:
Campaign website: https://www.johnmanlove.org