Hotel? No Hotel? Hard to Say, as Early Voting's Split Darned Near Right Down the Middle.

Merten and Pulle are out; Schutze is about. They'll offer their reports from hotel shindigs pro and con -- and, just maybe, some council member throwdowns -- later in the night, as Dallas County Elections begins kicking out returns from the day's vote. But till then, the early-voting results are in, and, as of 7 p.m., the Vote Yes faction is out in front by hair's breadth, with 19,048 votes -- or 50.51 percent of the vote -- going against the city getting in the hotel business. Thus far, 18,665 have cast their ballots for the hotel.

Proposition 2 didn't fare quite as well in early voting: 20,212 casts their votes against it, for 56.01 percent of the vote, while 15,874 have voted to cap city subsidies at $1 million without a referendum.

Thus far, all the council incumbents are leading. In the heavily contested District 13 council race, Ann Margolin is leading Brint Ryan, 4,152 to 2,635 votes thus far. And keep an eye on District 7, where it's shaping up to be quite the three-way race between incumbent Carolyn Davis (with 729 votes), (former?) DISD school board trustee Ron Price (489) and Donald Parish (348).

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