Thursday, August 19, 2010

It's On: Birdwell Will Defend Senate Seat In November

Petition for mandamus fails test of law in 5th Dist. Appeals Court

Dallas -- Senate Brian Birdwell will be allowed to stand for re-election as Republican nominee for Senate District 22.

Justices of the Texas 5th District Court of Appeals at
Dallas denied mandamus relief requested by Democratic
Senatorial candidate John Cullar and the Democratic Party of
Texas to take Senator Brian Birdwell's name off the ballot.

The Democratic candidate had moved the Court to take action
by showing that Senator Birdwell voted in elections in
Virginia during the 5-year time frame required for minimum
residency in Texas and in the District in which he intends
to run.

"We find no applicable section of the election code that
empowers us to simply declare Birdwell ineligible and order
respondents to do whatever is necessary to take Birdwell off
the ballot," according to an denial written and returned

The Justices cited the Texas Election Code and the
Constitution of Texas requirements that a relator state
specifically what evidence there is that would point to a
candidate's ineligiblity. They claimed that the public
records submitted in the petition for mandamus - certified
copies of official voting records, the application for voter
registration and two fishing licenses issued for an in-state
resident of Virginia - did not give them specific cause for
Sen. Birdwell's disqualification.

They also cited the fact that the party charged with finding
fact in the matter, the Texas Secretary of State, had
already determined that Sen. Birdwell was qualified to run
for re-election because it was always his intention to
return to Texas.

Sen. Birdwell was injured very severely in the 9/11 attack
on the Pentagon. During the time period under scrutiny of
the Court, he was recovering from burns that covered a large
percentage of his body.

Mr. Cullar is a Waco attorney who is the former McLennan
County Democratic Chairman.

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