Fifth Court of Appeals: Democrats sue Birdwell
DALLAS – The recent filing in Dallas’ fifth court of appeals by newly elected Republican Senator Brian Birdwell is gaining momentum across the state.
The Democratic Party filed what some are calling a "politically driven" lawsuit against Birdwell and Republican Party of Texas Chairman Steve Munisteri.
Cullar was nominated by the Senate District 22 Democratic County Executive Committee.
Birdwell’s eligibility has been called into question over his record of voting in Virginia from 2004-2006 as well as owning a fishing license from the state.
Copies of court documents obtained stated the election code defines "residence" as "domicile, that is, one’s home and fixed habitation to which one intends to return after temporary absence."
Birdwell’s representing attorney alleges the documents relied upon fail to conclusively establish Texas was not Birdwell’s permanent residence from 2004-2006.
The court documents continue to say, " Birdwell is a decorated war hero who was seriously injured during the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon and was in Virginia afterwards, during the 04-06 time period, undergoing extensive facial reconstruction procedures."
"I have great confidence in both our legal team and the judicial process, and feel certain that our response will demonstrate that I am qualified to continue serving as your Texas State Senator," stated Birdwell in a news release issued from his campaign office.
Cullar, hoping to replace Birdwell after the remainder of former Senator Kip Averitt’s term is up, stated he has called his district home for more than 26 years.
"I’m going to run a comprehensive campaign and part of that is analyzing if my opponent is eligible to represent the people of SD 22," said Cullar.
Birdwell has stated he has owned a real property interest in Texas since 1988 and purchased his current property in November 2005 and was stationed in Virginia for military service.
"The Republican Party of Texas is proud to support State Senator Brian Birdwell and we look forward to his reelection," said Munisteri.
"I had the pleasure of first meeting Senator Birdwell approximately three years ago at the state convention of the Young Conservatives of Texas.
"I sincerely believe he will continue to serve our state and country with distinction and honor. It is my privilege as state party chairman to assist him in any way possible in his re-election."
SD 22 covers the counties of Bosque, Coryell, Ellis, Falls, Hill, Hood, Johnson, Mclennan, Navarro and Somervell.
Birdwell obtained declaratory judgment in the 355th District Court of Hood County on April 26 of this year affirming his residence in Texas since 1973.
According to documents, John Cullar and the Texas Democratic Party filed in Fort Worth’s Court of Appeals about Birdwell’s eligibility to appear on the ballot pressuring Birdwell to file back in Dallas.