Williamson County Democratic Party chair Greg Windham holds a peculiar view of voters’ perception of the party he was elected to lead.
Windham said Moving Wilco Forward and Annie’s (List) play into anti-Democratic stereotypes, making Williamson County residents and other Texans “afraid of Democrats.”
“They [voters] think we are here to kiss their men, kill their babies and take their guns,” Windham said.
In an interview with Round Rock Leader editor Brad Stutzman, Windham echoed derisive stereotypes that Republicans frequently use to bash Democrats. During his brief tenure as the head of the local party, these sentiments have sparked conflict with a number of precinct chairs on the party’s executive committee.
Stutzman provides a balanced summary of the disagreement between Windham and the executive committee members who voted to spend about half their cash to fund a voter registration drive conducted by a coordinated campaign representing all local Democratic candidates. However, Windham’s comments quoted in the story reveal that he is fixated on opposing the treasurer of Moving Wilco Forward, the political action committee managing the coordinated campaign.
Robert Jones is a Democratic political consultant with a remarkable track record of success, serving as the political director for Annie’s List, a statewide “organization dedicated to electing progressive women to office.” Jones formed Moving Wilco Forward in December 2008 with the express purpose of electing all the Democratic candidates in Williamson county.
In voting to move $5,000 over to Moving Wilco Forward, the majority of executive committee members expressed greater confidence in the organization’s ability to execute the voter registration program than Windham.
Windham said he believes volunteers should use “elbow grease,” going door-to-door to register voters.
Hard work is part of the plan, and the coordinated campaign will do a significant amount of door-to-door canvassing; however, the coordinated campaign will also be using mail pieces and targeting new residents of Williamson county, many of whom may have neglected to move their voter registration. Take the average street in your average neighborhood, for example. Perhaps 1 in 20 homes on that street will have moved in the past year. “Elbow grease” is wasted knocking on the other 19 doors.
Windham may not have been aware of this, which may explain why he was in a very small minority voting against the proposal. After all, Windham has only run one political campaign, a failed bid for County Commissioner in 2008.
After the executive committee voted to write the check to Moving Wilco Forward, Windham fired off an antagonistic email to a large number of local Democrats.
It would be responsible for wasteful spenders to be eradicated in order to combat the stereotypes that prevent us from winning elections. We are living in an age of consequences and it would be refreshing for some people to wake up and realize it.
One is led to wonder how to “eradicate” members of the executive committee who disagree with him. The executive committee believes the best chance for success in November is with an organization that has the experience and tools to register more voters. They believe that a Moving Wilco Forward-led coordinated campaign will make a much better case than Windham that the Democratic Party better represents the interests of Williamson County’s working families.
The top concerns of voters this election, contrary to what Windham says, are Texas’ highest-in-the-nation electric and home insurance rates, the difficulty in finding a job or getting enough hours to make ends meet, the expense of sending a child to college, the fear of being one illness away from bankruptcy and the strain of toll roads and fuel prices on the family budget.
In ways that directly impact the lives of families in Williamson county, the Democratic Party represents positive change, greater transparency and accountability. All the better ideas for government are Democratic. The Republican party deals in fear, distrust, delay, stagnation and corruption. The Republican party is sorry that BP was asked to pay for the damage caused by their negligence. The Republican party wants to eliminate Social Security and terminate unemployment benefits. The Republican Party wants to give $3 million to each of the richest 120,000 taxpayers.
Local Democratic activists feel a sense of urgency to act now to take back government and use it to defend working families instead of giant corporations like ExxonMobil or BP. Every election that passes without voters hearing our message, more children fail, more homes are foreclosed, more workers become jobless, more jobless become homeless and summers keep getting hotter.
Greg Windham needs to heed his own advice: “We are living in an age of consequences and it would be refreshing for some people to wake up and realize it.” Wake up, Greg. Realize that you’re hurting the very cause you were elected to champion. Either that or step down and allow someone who actually believes that informed voters will side with the Democratic Party.