The latest math
Here's Paul Burka's latest math on the Speaker Race:
All in all, this has been a pretty quiet day, especially compared to yesterday. Geren and Kuempel coming out for Pitts was not news; most people had them as ABCs all along. Raymond, unlike most of the other Craddick Ds, didn't have plum committee assignments that would be at risk if he switched, so his defection was not a shock. That move was nullified by Democrat Eddie Lucio III's weather-vane endorsement of Craddick. This movement of Ds does help Pitts, but some switchers are more important than others--specifically, what Pitts needs is Republican votes. The math of the speakers race continues to be that Craddick had 69 Rs and 17 Ds pledged to him on December 28. Three of the Ds have defected, leaving him with 83 plus the switchers; Lucio makes 84. That's 9 more than he needs. For Pitts to win, Craddick must lose 10 more votes. Most of them are going to have to be Republicans who are currently pledged to Craddick. Looking at the list of R pledges to Craddick, I can find 10 who OUGHT to switch, but not 10 who are likely to.Kuempel and Geren have long been known as ABCs, so it's certainly no shock that they are switching.
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