Down on the island, the saga of disgraced jurist Christopher Dupuy took another turn this week as Ryan Patrick, a visiting judge from Harris County (and son of the right wing extremist State Senator Dan Patrick) dismissed five felony indictments that had been filed against Mr. Dupuy.
The five dismissed charges included two felony retaliation charges and three charges of abuse of office.
The judge also ordered Mr. Dupuy not to file any more pro se motions now that he has appointed counsel.
The ruling from Judge Patrick still leaves intact two felony aggravated perjury charges and four other misdemeanor charges.
As I have said many times before, the citizens of Galveston County got just what they deserved when they pulled the straight ticket lever without knowing anything about the fitness of Mr. Dupuy to serve on the bench - other than the fact he had an R after his name.
While I am not ready to stand in the line of folks demanded non-partisan judicial elections because I think they would be even more corrupted by campaign money than what we have now, something needs to be done to encourage the electorate to educate themselves - even if to a minor degree - as to who is running on the down-ballot races. The folks running for those down-ballot positions have a greater influence on our lives than most people realize.
It's those folks on the down-ballot races who draw the lines for both state and federal legislative districts. It's those folks on the down-ballot races who draw up schemes to deprive people of their right to vote. It's those folks on the down-ballot races who shut off debate and pass measures restricting women's right to make decisions about their bodies. It's folks on those down-ballot races who pass laws making it easier for the state to invade your privacy and ignore the Fourth Amendment. It's those folks on the down-ballot races who create a justice court system that serves as nothing more than an assembly line for the county to extract money from motorists accused of speeding. It's those folks on the down-ballot races who blindly sign search warrants allowing the police to strap folks down and stick needles in their arms.
You have been warned.