On Friday at the annual National Rifle Association gathering held in Dallas, President Donald J. Trump spoke of Gonzales and the spirit that moved Texians in 1835 to stand against tyrannical forces. He referenced the “Come and Take It” flag to raucous applause and admiration from those in attendance.
However, that spirit of independence and self-governance failed to carry itself south on Saturday, as local voters barely bothered to show up in the city's yearly council elections.
Just 9.06 percent of eligible voters showed to the polls to vote in the District 1 race for councilman, where Gary Schroeder retained his seat against a challenge from Mike Hanson. A week of early voting netted 45 votes for Schroeder and 7 for Hanson. On Election Day, 21 people showed up to cast their choice for the incumbent while 5 supported the challenger. Schroeder won with an unofficial total of 66-12.
The total votes cast in the race were 78. That's a far cry from the 859 registered voters in District 1, as provided by the Gonzales County Voter Registrar's office.
The District 2 race was a slightly more lively affair. Early vote totals favored incumbent Tommy Schurig with 47 votes to Jimmy Kelly's 17. Election Day scored 20 more for Schurig and 12 for Kelly. In the end, Schurig was re-elected by a margin of 67-29, which makes for a decent community college basketball score but not much for a free local election. The 96 voters who showed up in District 2 are 8.96 percent of the 1,071 registered voters able to participate.
The official canvasing of the results will be held tonight at the regular City of Gonzales council meeting. After the results are certified, the winners will be sworn into office.