News & Notes: Jenkins Surgery Update, Who Sent Sherbet's Stuff Home and Former Cowboys QB Poised to Swap Senate Teams

What a Week For the New County Judge

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins has been pummeled in the media and political circles for playing Scottie Pippen to Commissioner John Wiley Price's Michael Jordan in the game to push out Elections Administrator Bruce Sherbet. But just when things seemed like they couldn't get any worse for the political newbie, he took a nasty spill on a patch of ice and broke his leg early yesterday morning on his way to work.

Despite multiple school district closings because of the icy road conditions, Jenkins held commissioners court Tuesday and kept county offices open Wednesday. A surgery to repair the leg at Parkland Hospital was successful, and his chief of staff, Lauren Mish, told us in an e-mail: "Judge Jenkins is doing well and conveyed his appreciation for the many kind words and well wishes."

This Sherbet Thing Will. Not. Die.

One of the more shocking aspects of the Sherbet mess is that his personal belongings were sent to his house Tuesday. Darryl Martin, the commissioners court administrator, took responsibility in an e-mail to Unfair Park for the decision to pay Sherbet another month for sitting at home.

Mr. Sherbet and I had a very brief and cordial conversation [Tuesday]. We decided it would be in the best interest of staff of the Elections Department, Mr. Sherbet, and Ms. Pippins-Poole if his resignation was effective immediately and we would pay him through the end of his resignation period, March 1st. Mr. Sherbet was not locked out of the building and I asked him if he would like to make arrangements to get his things. Mr. Sherbet said it would be fine if staff packed his belongings and sent it to his house which I directed staff to do. The decision to handle the resignation this way was my decision based on the need to settle things down at the Department as quickly as possible.

Could Captain America Join Leppert's Senate Campaign?

So we know George H.W. Bush-backed Roger Williams, former Solicitor General Ted Cruz and Railroad Commissioners Elizabeth Ames Jones and Michael Williams are definitely running for Kay Bailey Hutchison's U.S. Senate seat. Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst and Mayor Tom Leppert are likely to announce soon, and U.S. Representatives Joe Baron and Ron Paul could also join the mix.

At one time, state Senator Florence Shapiro (our boss' sister) was interested enough to form an exploratory committee for the gig, but we just found out that the Plano resident and 18-year veteran of the Senate removed herself from the race. The Houston Chronicle and Politico had this back in mid-January, but somehow we missed it. Frank Ward, Shapiro's communications director, sent along her official statement.

I am committed to serving in the Texas State Senate now and in the future. My full focus is on serving the families of my State Senate District and Texas to ensure that no new taxes are imposed, our conservative values are protected, and responsible legislation is enacted. I also want to extend a warm and sincere Texas-sized salute to Senator Hutchison and her family. Our state is better and stronger because of her service in the United States Senate.

Roger Staubach chaired her committee when Shapiro became the first candidate to announce back in July 2008. Now that Staubach, who's tight with Hutchison, is available, could he chair the campaign of his other buddy, Mayor Tom? There have been a lot of questions about whether Leppert could win without statewide name recognition, but Staubach would give him a big boost. (Staubach co-chaired Leppert's 2007 mayoral campaign.)

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Sam Merten
Contact: Sam Merten