Monday, June 17, 2013

Williamson County Commissioner's Court: "What Would Voters Ask?"

KLBJ Radio is reporting that the Texas Civil Rights Project has filed a lawsuit against Williamson County government on behalf of a former candidate for Constable, Precinct 3.  The candidate,  Robert Lloyd, alleges that members of the Wilco Commissioners Court asked him "inappropriate" questions during the interview process. 

According to Lloyd, Commissioners asked him about his views on abortion, gay marriage, his party affiliation, and his voting record.  He believes these questions were illegal for a prospective "employee."   

The only problem is that Lloyd was not "applying for a job" in the traditional sense; he was asking for an appointment to a politically elected position.  County constables are chosen by voters via partisan elections- in other words, candidates file for the office as either Democrats or Republicans and then run a lengthy campaign in which voters thoroughly vet them. 

If Commissioners did ask about Mr. Lloyd's partisan views, they would merely be asking about the issues primary election voters care about.  The reality is that Williamson County voters continue to choose pro-life, pro-marriage, & pro-family Republicans.  Since the voters will not be able to approve a new constable for some time, it is the duty of the Commissioners Court to stand in the gap for primary voters.  And it looks like the winning candidate was eminently qualified.

And just to note:  contrary to Lloyd's assertions, voting records are not private.  Public records available to anyone include data on whether or not you vote, when you vote, and which party primary you prefer.  The only thing that is supposedly private is which candidate you voted for (although with the recent NSA snooping revelations, one has to wonder.)

If Mr. Lloyd thought he could participate in a Williamson County primary election without having to answer questions about his political philosophy, he is very naive indeed.  While the Texas Civil Rights Project would probably like to stop anyone from asking candidates about social issues, (and are trying to dismiss such issues as just "religious" concerns,) the reality is that voters here do care and they will go on asking.  If you want to run for elected office, be prepared to share your political views. 

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