Of the four candidates, Jeff Williams, George Huntoon and Virginia Pittman spoke at the luncheon. Mr. Williams is an attorney, Ms. Pittman is the supervisor of the court's criminal department and Mr. Huntoon is a real estate huckster, er agent.
Judge Yeoman's court is the busiest in the State of Texas, or at least that's what Judge Yeoman announces to the gathered throng when he steps out to present his monologue, er welcome speech, every morning.
Mr. Williams said he has practiced in Judge Yeoman's court and knows what a nightmare it can be. He promised to streamline procedures so that attorneys weren't spending hours in court. Of course on the traffic side of things, the nightmarish docket can be a blessing as DPS officers will rarely appear for trial and cases are continued for a year or more.
Ms. Pittman understands the inner workings of the court. She knows what works now and what doesn't. She proposed to get input from court staff as to what needs to be changed. While some might say that a court insider could be very myopic when it comes to operations, when it comes to the strange world of the justice court, that's not necessarily a bad thing.
Finally we come to the strange world of Mr. Huntoon. He was quite proud to let us know he wasn't an attorney -- but he always wanted to be one. His radio ads tout him as someone who would run the court as a conservative republican. When questioned about that statement he seemed at quite a loss for what a JP court actually does.
If you're concerned that a Harris County Justice of the Peace might conduct a marriage ceremony between two gays or lesbians, then Mr. Huntoon is the man for you. He said he would never do that. If you're worried that a Harris County Justice of the Peace might sit over a trial in which a defendant was charged with a hate crime (WTF?), he let us know that he wouldn't stand for it -- he didn't think federal hate crime legislation was constitutional. Finally, if you lie awake at night fretting that a Harris County Justice of the Peace would be one of those liberal activist judges who make up the law on the bench, you needn't worry anymore.
Mr. Huntoon said that as a judge he represented everyone in the district. Huh? Is that what he really said? Earth to McFly, a judge represents no one. A judge is supposed to be a neutral arbiter of the facts before him.
So for those of y'all voting in the republican primary next month, you've got a choice. You can choose the attorney, the court employee or the buffoon who has no freakin' idea what a Justice of the Peace does.