Almost a year ago to the day, Angela Hunt dropped off 90,000 signatures at City Hall, triggering the Trinity River toll road referendum. And it felt like old times last night as former council members Sandy Greyson and John Loza, State Rep. Terri Hodge, and even this guy were spotted at Hunt’s fund-raiser, which was held at a beautiful Swiss Avenue residence built in 1917. Heck, even Hunt’s summer intern (who handled front-door duties at the event), has a Trinity connection.
Esther Weisbrod, a 20-year-old junior at Columbia, was able to land the internship with Hunt after she sent her a copy of a paper she wrote for a politics class late last year titled “The War Over the Trinity: Controversy over a toll road and so much more.” She swears getting the internship had nothing to do with her uncle, who is big-time lawyer and Democratic contributor Les Weisbrod (which I know to be true, because when I first met Esther a few weeks ago, I mentioned Les, and Hunt didn’t know who he was). You may know Les as the attorney for Adriane Springs, wife of former Dallas Cowboys running back Ron Springs.
In her paper, Esther said the Trinity “provoked what perhaps is the most divisive debate in Dallas since the vote for secession from the Union.” Perhaps a bit of an oversell, but an interesting read nonetheless. I’m thinking Jim’s favorite part was: “Schutze’s weekly column featured him investigating every aspect of the toll road with no attempt at objectivity.”
Trinity connections aside, this was about raising cash, which Hunt did very well judging by the incredible attendance. I just spoke with her, and she’s not committing to a final tally, only saying that she is still calculating the contributions and had “a very good fund-raiser.” I’m gonna guess the amount equals or even surpasses Mayor Tom’s net of $30,000 from his zoo fund-raiser.
No matter what the final amount is, she looks plenty funded to knock off whoever will challenge her in May’s council elections. As for whom that might be, nobody knows. Not yet.
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Speaking of which, Larry Duncan, president of the Dallas County Schools Board of Trustees, confirmed to Unfair Park that he’ll be running for county judge in 2010. “I’ll get shit done,” says Duncan. “That will be my campaign motto.”
Also planning a run at Jim Foster is John Loza, who was there with his political consultant, Anna Casey. Sam Coats has also been mentioned as a possible candidate, along with Ed Oakley. However, as I said before, Oakley is planning to take back his District 3 seat, and this was reconfirmed by several people at Hunt’s fund-raiser.
The most interesting discussion of the night that I overheard included Paul Sims (Hunt’s husband, who was taking pictures at the event), Duncan and Hodge. Sims says Obama is a slam-dunk to win the presidency, while Hodge speculates that whenever she decides to hang it up in District 100, her seat could go to a Hispanic candidate. She noted that Hispanics have emerged in leadership roles in her district, and the blacks “won’t know what hit ‘em.”
As for whom that might be, Hodge says District 2 council member Pauline Medrano will “bring back the Medrano name to prominence.” --Sam Merten