The Waco Trib continues to stay on top of the evolving story of Republican State Senator Averitt withdrawing from the Republican primary, leaving Darren Yancy the seat. It seems now that some of the McLennan County Republican Party leaders are rallying behind the idea of either convincing Senator Averitt to reconsider his withdrawal from the race or the idea of still trying to reelect Averitt so he can then resign and allow the GOP and Democratic County Chairs of SD-22 to each appoint a candidate to run in the primary. Two scenarios can happen if Senator Averitt does win the primary. Hat tip once again to the Waco Trib for providing this information
An Averitt primary victory would trigger one of two scenarios:
* If the senator were to withdraw right after the March primary, Republican and Democratic committees consisting of the party chairs from the 10 counties in the Senate district — McLennan, Bosque, Coryell, Ellis, Falls, Hill, Hood, Johnson, Navarro and Somervell — would each name a replacement candidate to compete in November’s general election.
* If he were to stay on through the general election (where he would have to defeat a Libertarian candidate) and then step down, there would be a special election to fill the seat, in which candidates of any political stripe could compete.
Former state senator and Averitt mentor Sibley to ask Averitt to reconsider withdrawing from race
By Michael W. Shapiro Tribune-Herald staff writer
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
David Sibley, a former state senator and mentor to state Sen. Kip Averitt, R-Waco, said he plans to ask Averitt to reconsider his decision to end his re-election bid.
Averitt announced Wednesday that he was ending his campaign at the recommendation of his doctor, leaving Burleson Republican Darren Yancy a clear shot at the statehouse in the lead-up to a redistricting year.
“I’m going to appeal to him and say, ‘Please don’t do this,’ ” said Sibley on Monday, arguing the consequences for McLennan County and Waco could be dire if there’s not local representation in the Senate when lawmakers start carving up new legislative and congressional districts.
“I’m afraid we’re going to get cut up like boardinghouse pie,” said Sibley, a former Waco mayor and county prosecutor who left the Senate in 2002 and now works as a lobbyist. “I’ve seen it happen before, and it can take decades for counties to recover from that.”
If Yancy were to beat Averitt, whose name will be on the primary ballot, he would be without Democratic opposition in November. Yancy said Monday that the county would be in good hands during redistricting.
“I certainly understand Senator Sibley’s comments,” said Yancy, who has positioned himself to the right of Averitt, “but I have no intention, in any way, shape, form or fashion, to bust up McLennan County.”
“McLennan County’s a great county, and we have to leave it just it is, and I’m going to fight just as hard for it as the rest of the other nine,” Yancy added.
Sibley said that during redistricting, legislators place their own electoral self-interest high, working to draw themselves into winnable districts.
He said Yancy naturally would want to shore up his support to get re-elected in the district, which includes McLennan, Bosque, Coryell, Ellis, Falls, Hill, Hood, Johnson, Navarro and Somervell counties. And keeping McLennan, the population center of the district, whole might not fit with that goal.
“I’ve been through it twice, and it’s the most personal thing out there,” Sibley said. “People talk about doing this or that, but he’s not going to want to work with us.”
Sibley said he’d like to see Averitt — who has gained influence in recent years, especially on water issues — stay on in the Legislature for the betterment of the district and Waco, suggesting the senator could follow in the footsteps of one of Central Texas’ most famous politicians.
Hill County native and former Lt. Gov. Bob Bullock had heart surgery during the middle of a campaign in 1994, Sibley said.
“He said, ‘I’m officially ignoring my opponent, and I’m going to get well and get ready for the legislative session,’ ” Sibley recalled.
Stay tuned, as I am sure this story will continue to evolve.