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Terri Hodge Plea Agreement good for House 100 citizens

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By Shawn Williams – Dallas South News Editor

When I received a call this morning saying that State Representative Terri Hodge had plead guilty to making false statements by not reporting income on her personal taxes, I was shocked to say the least.  I figured that Hodge would sludge on through March, campaigning right up to the end.  My surprise was more about timing than results.

Voters who supported Hodge will now have a chance to get to know House 100 candidate Eric Johnson a little better.  Rep. Hodge has a long track record in her district and even with the legal troubles she was having, beating her in the primary wasn’t going to be an easy task for Johnson.

I fully expect the Southern Dallas leaders who backed Rep. Hodge to throw their support behind Johnson, who has been able to marry

Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson

grassroots support with the ability to raise substantial sums of money.  Johnson should continue to campaign just as fervently as he has (Hodge’s name will still appear on the ballot) since last summer, getting out to meet voters in South Dallas, West Dallas, and all the areas he hopes to represent.

The indictments of Dallas officials has clouded the skies on forecasted progress for the city for years.  While these types of scandals seem to hit Southern Dallas representatives especially hard, there’s no excuse for leaders.  Rep. Hodge took responsibility for her actions in a statement released by her campaign, saying “I want to take this opportunity to express my remorse to my colleagues in the Legislature, my friends, and my family for my actions. Most of all, I want to apologize to all the citizens of District 100 for letting them down.”

With Hodge’s admission of guilt, voters in District can look towards the future where they will have new leadership and hopefully a new direction.  While I have called for new faces in Southern Dallas leadership, I hate that it has to happen in this manor.  Still, Eric Johnson must finish his campaign strong and work to make block by block change that is sorely needed in many of the areas that he looks to represent.

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