In a closed-door meeting in the Denton County Elections office Sunday evening Nov. 12, the Denton County Democrats announced that Amy Taylor, who helped found the 3,571 member Facebook activism group Indivisible Denton, will chair a committee to coordinate local candidates’ campaigns in the upcoming 2018 primary and general elections.
Party chair Phyllis Wolper said she had asked Taylor about the job weeks ago, but Taylor had only recently agreed. The meeting served as a chance for candidates to meet Taylor and get everyone on the same page.
“We also gave candidates the opportunity to express their ideas of what they would like the party to offer their particular campaign as part of the coordinated campaign if they should be elected in the March 2018 primary election,” Wolper said. “In addition, the meeting allowed the newer potential candidates to ‘catch up’ on what the DCDP is doing and planning for the near future for GOTV (get out the vote) efforts.”
Wolper praised Taylor’s accomplishments in organizing left-leaning voters in North Texas, and said several of the current candidates were identified through Indivisible Denton. Wolper said Taylor was ideal for coordinating Democratic voting efforts because she was essentially already doing it.
“She was more-or-less the founder, and built that club one by one into the powerhouse that it is,” Wolper said. “Her leadership skills, they’re incredible, so leading a large effort like this to coordinate the campaign is a perfect fit.”
Taylor said that her work with Indivisible Denton was to empower citizens to stand up for their rights, her work for the county Democratic Party would be to help them assert their voice more aggressively.
“I think the coordinated campaign in the Democratic Party when it’s running for office is more of an offensive strategy. We want to show voters why the Democratic Party is the party that’s best for their families, that will serve them,” she said. “We’re going to maybe have fewer financial resources, but our human resources are astounding and powerful and that’s where we’re going to change the tide for our country.”
Candidates from several races were present to give input on what they wanted from the party after the March primary races. Texas House District 64 candidate Mat Pruneda said it was a routine discussion.
“We were all getting onboard with our combined strategies,” he said. “It was mostly an exploratory discussion on what the candidates expected of the party.”
The meeting comes a day after U.S. House District 26 candidate Linsey Fagan circulated an email making several accusations that the party had discouraged and hindered her campaign. Fagan said that her primary issue as a candidate is ethics in government, and as such she was compelled to speak up when she saw something wrong.
“I think there were a lot of people who were turning a blind eye to things,” she said. “Ethics are important to me. Ethics are important to the American people. I want to do the right thing.”
The Lewisville Texan Journal is working to independently verify Fagan’s claims.
Two of the people the Fagan campaign specifically mentioned said her claims are either misrepresentations of what really happened or patently false.
Competing candidate Will Fisher, who the Fagan campaign said is the beneficiary of party favoritism but was accused of no wrongdoing himself, said the accusations are completely untrue and that he wanted to refocus the campaign on the issues.
“[The accusations are] completely false and baseless, and it’s unfortunate that mud is being slung in the primary,” Fisher said. “We will continue to focus on the issues and what’s best for this district.”