Natasha Harper-Madison’s residency

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I was wondering when this was going to come up. Elizabeth Findell writes in the Statesman that Natasha Harper-Madison, candidate in East Austin’s District 1, has two addresses:

Natasha Harper-Madison, 40, a local activist and small-business consultant running for City Council, told the American-Statesman last week that she lives in the 13th Street house with a roommate. She and her husband, Austin firefighter Thomas Madison, own a home in a Williamson County section of far Northwest Austin. Madison lives there with the couple’s two youngest children, who attend elementary school in the Round Rock school district.

Harper-Madison said she moved to the 13th Street house in October 2016 for personal reasons that she will not make part of the campaign. She said she did not move there to run for office.

Will this become an issue? If this were a partisan race for a higher office, such as state legislature or Congress, I would say absolutely. As for this race, I suppose it depends whether Vince Harding, Lewis Conway, Mariana Salazar and Reedy Spigner feel like making it an issue. If I had to guess, at least one of them will.

The issue of a candidate living somewhere else or having a second life in another part of town is much more sensitive in District 1 than, say, District 10, in wealthy West Austin. Although Harper-Madison’s roots in East Austin run deep, the perception that she doesn’t want her own kids to go to schools in the district will likely rub some voters the wrong way.

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