The greatest obstacle to electing Democrats in The 134 is getting people to run in the first place. If there is no Democratic candidate on the ballot, there is no reason to vote in a Democratic primary, and no reason to not vote in the Republican one.
That is why at The 134 PAC we are advising potential candidates, training them and their staffs in how to run an effective campaign, and focusing resources on specific races at the county and municipal level. This is how you start a thirty year plan to rebuild the rural Democratic Party in Texas. Many of these races are paying positions, some are not, but all of them are important because they are how we grow the Democratic presence and vote in our overwhelmingly Republican region. When we put up candidates that energizes the Democrats and volunteers in that county. It makes our presence know and give lie to the belief that Democrats out here are extinct.
Of course, we have to approach these races with positively realistic. None of these races are going to be easy. We will lose many of them at first. But entering a race for the first time brings experience and name recognition in the community. Well run campaigns bring respect and credibility and lay the ground work for future races. Over time the races will get better and tighter as Democratic candidates, perhaps even contested Democratic primaries become normal again. We will also be building a bench of candidates and training campaign managers, fundraisers and other personnel that will be what drives the transformation in rural Texas. The Mayor or County Commissioner of today will be the State Rep or Congressman of tomorrow.
Jon Mark Hogg is a lawyer in San Angelo, Texas and the Founder of The 134 PAC.