The Texas Legislature will start the 2015 session with a handful of empty chairs and unfinished elections. State Senator Glenn Hegar, a Republican, was elected state comptroller of public accounts, and Mayor Julián Castro of San Antonio resigned after President Obama appointed him to be secretary of housing and urban development. Let the spree begin. State Senator Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, having lost the race for lieutenant governor, is running for mayor of her hometown. Representative Mike Villarreal, D-San Antonio, was just elected to another term in the House but wants the job Van de Putte is seeking. Representative Lois Kolkhorst, a Republican who also won re-election, is running for Hegar’s Senate seat. Representatives José Menéndez and Trey Martinez Fischer, both San Antonio Democrats, are eyeing Van de Putte’s Senate seat.
There is at least one San Antonio candidate for Villarreal’s job, three candidates wanting to succeed Kolkhorst, and somewhere in the land of political dreams, candidates thinking of replacing Menendez or Martinez Fischer, depending on who wins that Senate job.
Quitting the jobs they have now is just as complicated.
Politicians are not like the rest of us, handing in their two weeks’ notice, dancing a little victory jig, packing up the family photos on the desk and moving on. Theirs is a speculative business that sometimes requires them to risk the jobs they have for the chance that another job is available.