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District 3 keeps up the mudslinging

Friday, September 19, 2014 by Mark Richardson

The bickering continued in District 3 on Thursday, when candidate Shaun Ireland called out opponent Jose Valera for not voting in Austin. Ireland said the lack of voting is “disappointing.” In a news release, Ireland said that Valera has only voted twice as an adult, and not in any of Austin’s local municipal or bond elections. He noted that Valera’s voter registration was currently suspended due to inactivity. “Austinites expect candidates and public officials to vote on a regular basis. Valera’s voting history denotes a dereliction of civic duty,” wrote Ireland. Valera pointed out that he has served his country since the age of 18, first at West Point Academy, then as a combat arms officer in Iraq. He said his voting record has no bearing on how he would serve the district as a Council member. The accusation of “dereliction of civic duty” against Valera comes from what some might consider an odd source — Ireland’s record shows that he first voted in Austin fairly recently, in 2011. However, campaign staff explained that Ireland had voted consistently since turning 18, but only registered in Austin when he moved here three years ago. Prior to that, Ireland voted in Nacogdoches.

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