Did This White Candidate Win Election Pretending to be Black?

-By Warner Todd Huston

Candidate Dave Wilson was the surprise winner of the District 2 seat in Tuesday’s Houston, Texas Community College Board Trustee election. It was a “surprise” because Wilson is white and District 2 is a Houston inner city electorate. But some are crying foul because Wilson sent out a pretty misleading flyer making it seem like both he and his supporters were black.

The big winner, Dave Wilson, fully admits that this was all a campaign of political mischief. “I didn’t expect to win,” he told KHOU 11 TV after his big upset victory.

The incumbent, one Bruce Austin, an African American, has been elected and re-elected to the District 2 seat for 24 years and his loss on Election Day came as an unwelcome surprise. It did sort of seem he was talking it with a bit of humor in the TV report, though.

In the KHOU report, Austin says, “I don’t think it’s good for both democracy and the whole concept of fair play. But that was not his intent, apparently [then he chuckles].”

So, what did Dave Wilson do that was so underhanded?

In the weeks before the election, Wilson sent out fliers that showed smiling African American faces surrounded by the slogan, “Please vote for our friend and neighbor, Dave Wilson.”

Views of the flier that Wilson sent out

No where on the flyer was a photo of anti-gay activist and political mischief maker Dave Wilson–a white guy.

There was also another amusing bit. On one page of the flier Wilson had put in large letters, “Endorsed by Ron Wilson.”

Wilson said “Ron Wilson” endorsed him

Now, the name Ron Wilson is well known to voters in District 2 because a Ron Wilson was a very popular state representative. Many looking at the flier may have thought that Dave Wilson meant that Ron Wilson.

But in smaller letters under Ron Wilson’s name, candidate Dave Wilson had printed “Ron Wilson and Dave Wilson are cousins.”

Sure enough the white Dave Wilson does have a cousin named Ron Wilson. He lives in Iowa and has never been elected to the Texas House. Oh, and he’s white.

Of course, nowhere on the flier does Wilson claim to be African American, to be sure.

Austin himself sent out fliers to counter Wilson’s fliers. Austin’s fliers showed an actual photo of Dave Wilson and claimed that Wilson was a “right-wing hate-monger.”

But not everyone is blaming Dave Wilson’s flier for this upset. Other members of the board also found a harder election than they thought and the board has faced many complaints of corruption. It is just as likely, they say, that Austin was ousted by voters just sick and tired of the same old same old staying in office and went to the polls with a “throw the bums out” attitude.

“I suspect it’s more than just race,” says Bob Stein, the Rice University political scientist. “The Houston Community College was under some criticism for bad performance. And others on the board also had very serious challenges.”

Austin is calling for a recount but the election system is pretty accurate and few expect the outcome to be changed much by a recount.

I have to say, it is pretty funny to see Mr. Wilson’s interview. He is absolutely reveling in his mischief making election. Hilarious stuff. What do you think? Funny or a travesty?
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

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Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, BigHollywood.com, and BigJournalism.com, as well as RightWingNews.com, MrConservative.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com, Wizbang.com, among many, many others. Huston has also appeared on Fox News, Fox Business Network, CNN, and many local TV shows as well as numerous talk radio shows throughout the country.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

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