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Environmental Democrats back rail, 3 candidates

Thursday, September 4, 2014 by Jo Clifton

Even though a majority of the City Council candidates asking for their support said they are opposed to the rail and road proposition on the Nov. 4 ballot, members of the Austin Environmental Democrats enthusiastically endorsed Proposition 1 on Wednesday.

More than 75 percent of those casting votes on the issue said they favored passage. Approximately 75 members of the group took part in the endorsement election.

The group also endorsed Gregorio ‘Greg’ Casar for District 4, Jeb Boyt for District 7 and Mandy Dealey for District 10. Each winning candidate garnered considerably more than the 60 percent required to gain the endorsement.

Casar was the biggest individual winner, with 73 percent of the votes in the District 4 race. Katrina Daniel was the runner-up with less than 22 percent of the vote. Laura Pressley, who is also considered a contender in District 4, did not attend the meeting and received less than 1 percent of the vote, as did Marco Mancillas, who did participate.

Boyt received more than 65 percent of the vote, with Leslie Pool in second place at 28 percent.

In the District 10 race, Dealey got 69.6 percent, while Tina Cannon captured 18.8 percent. Jason Meeker, who also participated in the forum, got less than 1 percent of the vote.

While Boyt and Dealey said they would vote for the rail bonds, Casar said he would not, as did most of the other candidates attending Wednesday’s endorsement meeting. Daniel, Casar’s opponent, said the ballot item is controversial and she has not decided how she will vote on it. Mancillas, on the other hand, was adamant in his opposition.

Also announcing opposition were District 7 candidates Pool, Jimmy Paver, Pete Salazar and Melissa Zone. The group had previously endorsed District 2 candidate Delia Garza, and she too told them she would vote no on the rail proposition.


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