Houston Mayor Annise Parker Raises $1 Million—Good For Her Though Not So Meaningful For Most In Houston
Houston Mayor Annise Parker held a campaign kick-off fundraiser yesterday at the Four Seasons Hotel in Houston.
Some Facebook friends who were at the function said that Mayor Parker, a Democrat, announced that the event had raised $1 million for her campaign.
If Mayor Parker raised $1 million, and if she remains without a credible 2011 challenger, maybe she can use some of that money for voter registration and voter turnout in our Hispanic communities. Maybe she can make a real effort to increase political awareness in our big apathetic city.
This would give substance to Ms. Parker’s 2009 claim of a civil rights-based grassroots victory.
In 2009, Ms. Parker proved that an openly gay person can be elected Mayor of the fourth largest city in the nation.
At the same time, it should be recalled that Ms. Parker won the 2009 election with 53% of the 16% of Houston voters who cast a ballot.
In 2011, Ms. Parker has proven she is a good fundraiser.
While Ms. Parker’s 2009 victory remains an inspiration, there is not much hopeful to be found in the clear feeling of the great majority of Houston residents that city elections are not very important.
There is little grassroots enthusiasm for any politician in our city.
Mayor Parker’s million dollars is great news for her and her campaign. For most of the rest of us in Houston, it doesn’t mean so much.
Though in the end, we must recall that it is up to the individual to make the call to work with others for a better city.
As that million dollars sitting in Mayor Parker’s campaign bank account reminds us yet again—no matter the claims of civil rights and grassroots—nobody will do the work of democracy for everyday citizens.
( Of course, this all is a two way street. Hispanic leaders in Houston have an obligation to work to increase turnout on their own.)