Todd Staples

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Douglas Todd Staples
Texas Agriculture Commissioner
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 1, 2007
GovernorRick Perry
Preceded bySusan Combs
Member of the Texas Senate
from the 3rd district
In office
January 2001 – January 2007
Preceded byDrew Nixon
Succeeded byRobert Nichols
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 11th district
In office
February 1995 – January 2001
Preceded byElton Bomer
Succeeded byChuck Hopson
Member of the Palestine City Council
In office
1989–1991
Personal details
Born(1963-08-24) August 24, 1963 (age 49)
Spouse(s)Janet Staples
ChildrenJared Staples, Elizabeth Staples, Brian Thorn, Jonathan Thorn
Residence(1) Palestine, Anderson County
Texas, USA

(2) Austin, Texas

Alma materTexas A&M University
OccupationReal estate; Ranching
ReligionBaptist
Websitetoddstaples.com
 
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Douglas Todd Staples
Texas Agriculture Commissioner
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 1, 2007
GovernorRick Perry
Preceded bySusan Combs
Member of the Texas Senate
from the 3rd district
In office
January 2001 – January 2007
Preceded byDrew Nixon
Succeeded byRobert Nichols
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 11th district
In office
February 1995 – January 2001
Preceded byElton Bomer
Succeeded byChuck Hopson
Member of the Palestine City Council
In office
1989–1991
Personal details
Born(1963-08-24) August 24, 1963 (age 49)
Spouse(s)Janet Staples
ChildrenJared Staples, Elizabeth Staples, Brian Thorn, Jonathan Thorn
Residence(1) Palestine, Anderson County
Texas, USA

(2) Austin, Texas

Alma materTexas A&M University
OccupationReal estate; Ranching
ReligionBaptist
Websitetoddstaples.com

Douglas Todd Staples (born August 24, 1963)[1] is the current Republican Commissioner of the Texas Department of Agriculture. Prior to his election in 2006 as agriculture commissioner, Staples had served in both houses of the Texas State Legislature and on the city council in Palestine in Anderson County in east Texas.

Staples was unopposed for renomination in the GOP primary held on March 2, 2010. In the November 2 general election, he handily defeated the populist Democrat Hank Gilbert (born 1959) of Whitehouse and the Libertarian Party choice, Rick Donaldson of Rockwall County. Gilbert had also lost to Staples in 2006. In the 2010 primary, Gilbert defeated Richard S. "Kinky" Friedman, who was an Independent gubernatorial candidate in 2006 against Governor Rick Perry. Friedman announced thereafter that he was supporting Gilbert for agriculture commissioner and would not himself ever again seek public office.[2]

Contents

Background

Staples was reared in Palestine (pronounced PAL ES STEEN), the seat of Anderson County in East Texas. He graduated from Palestine High School where he was an active member of the Future Farmers of America. While in college, he served as state vice-president of the FFA from 1981 to 1982. He attended Texas A&M University and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics in 1984. He started a nursery business, and later became involved in cattle ranching with his family. He also owned a real estate business. He is a former instructor at Trinity Valley Community College.

Staples and his wife, Janet, have four grown children: Jared Staples, Elizabeth Staples, Brian Thorn, and Jonathan Thorn. He is a Southern Baptist and serves as a deacon in his local church.

Political career

Staples served on the non-partisan Palestine City Council from 1989 to 1991. In February 1995, he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives District 11 seat in a special election to replace Elton Bomer, who had been appointed state insurance commissioner by newly-elected Governor George W. Bush. In a contest against two Democrats, Staples avoided a runoff by about sixty votes, having collected 50.6 percent of the vote.

In 2000, Staples entered the race for the District 3 seat in the Texas Senate, which was vacated by Drew Nixon. Despite scandal surrounding Nixon, Staples held the seat for the Republican Party, having received more than 60 percent of the vote in the general election. He represented Anderson, Angelina, Cherokee, Hardin, Henderson, Jasper, Nacogdoches, Newton, Polk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby and Tyler counties, and portions of Montgomery and Smith counties.

In the Senate, Staples served as chairman of the Transportation & Homeland Security Committee, the Workers Compensation Select Interim Committee and the Texas Senate Republican Caucus. Staples sponsored and helped to pass a state constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. He was the vice-chair of the State Affairs Committee and the Veteran Affairs & Military Installations Committee.

Staples was unopposed for the Republican nomination for Agriculture Commissioner in 2006 when the incumbent Susan Combs instead was elected Texas Comptroller to succeed Carole Strayhorn. Staples defeated Democrat Hank Gilbert and Libertarian Clay Woolam in the November 7, 2006, general election. He received 2,307,406 votes (54.77 percent), a margin of 547,000 votes over Gilbert.[3]

In 2010, Staples ran for re-election as Agriculture Commissioner and won with more than 60 percent of the votes.[4]

The Staples campaign is available at the website http://www.toddstaples.com. Staples is running in 2014 for the office of Lieutenant Governor of Texas, with baseball great Nolan Ryan as his campaign chairman. The current lieutenant governor, David Dewhurst, is a candidate for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate in the primary election scheduled for May 29, 2012.

Election history

Most recent election

2010

Commissioner of Agriculture

Texas general election, 2006: Texas Commissioner of Agriculture[4] Party Candidate Votes  % -Republican Todd Staples 2,9573,406 60.82% -Democratic Hank Gilbert 1,738,456 35.79% -Libertarian Clay Woolam 164,035 3.37%

Turnout 4,856,266

2006

Texas general election, 2006: Texas Commissioner of Agriculture[5]
PartyCandidateVotes%±%
RepublicanTodd Staples2,307,40654.77-4.77
DemocraticHank Gilbert1,760,40241.79+3.97
LibertarianClay Woolam144,9893.44+2.26
Majority547,00412.98-8.74
Turnout4,212,797-4.85
Republican hold

Previous elections

2002

Texas general election, 2002: Senate District 3[6]
PartyCandidateVotes%±%
RepublicanTodd Staples119,99388.23+27.59
LibertarianMichael Carter16,00111.76+11.76
Majority103,99276.47+55.18
Turnout135,994-45.92
Republican hold

2000

Texas general election, 2000: Senate District 3[7]
PartyCandidateVotes%±%
RepublicanTodd Staples152,51460.64+10.55
DemocraticDavid Fisher98,97639.36-10.55
Majority53,53821.29+21.10
Turnout251,490+20.88
Republican hold
Republican primary, 2000: Senate District 3[8]
CandidateVotes%±%
Van Brookshire4,87511.08
Les Tarrance8,81618.05
Todd Staples20,36770.15
Majority21,52252.10
Turnout29,183

References

  1. ^ Office of the Secretary of State (Texas) (2002-09-13). "State Senate Candidates for 2002 General Election". http://www.sos.state.tx.us/elections/candidates/general/senate/senateaddr.shtml. Retrieved 2006-12-26. 
  2. ^ "Perry ready to take on White", Laredo Morning Times, March 3, 2010, pp. 1, 10A
  3. ^ "Texas Roundup". burntorangereport.com. http://www.burntorangereport.com/tag/Jeff%20Weems. Retrieved October 12, 2009. 
  4. ^ http://elections.sos.state.tx.us/elchist.exe
  5. ^ "2006 General Election". Office of the Secretary of State (Texas). http://elections.sos.state.tx.us/elchist.exe. Retrieved 2007-01-02. 
  6. ^ "2002 General Election". Office of the Secretary of State (Texas). http://elections.sos.state.tx.us/elchist.exe. Retrieved 2007-01-01. 
  7. ^ "2000 General Election". Office of the Secretary of State (Texas). http://elections.sos.state.tx.us/elchist.exe. Retrieved 2007-01-01. 
  8. ^ "2000 Republican Party Primary Election". Office of the Secretary of State (Texas). http://elections.sos.state.tx.us/elchist.exe. Retrieved 2007-01-01. 

External links

Preceded by
Elton Bomer
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from District 11 (Palestine)

1995–2001
Succeeded by
Chuck Hopson
Preceded by
Drew Nixon
Texas State Senator
from District 3 (Palestine)

2001–2007
Succeeded by
Robert Nichols
Preceded by
Susan Combs
Texas Commissioner of Agriculture
2007––present
Incumbent