Boyd Richie Last Faced an Election Opponent 30 Years Ago

Posted in Around The State, State Convention at 10:06 am by dembones

On May 27, Texas Democratic party chair Boyd Richie sent an email touting his experience in taking on Republicans:

As a County Attorney who has won elections in Republican territory and a grassroots volunteer party official who has helped other Democrats get elected, I have some very specific ideas about how to get the job done.

The Boyd Richie playbook is simple: To win elections in Republican territory, make sure there aren’t any Republicans on the ballot opposing you. According to documents available in the state archives and confirmed by Young County Clerk Shirley Choate, Richie has been on the ballot eight times and faced an opponent only in the 1976 Democratic primary.

Richie has been victorious in all eight campaigns in which he has been a candidate. However, he has faced an opponent only once, and has never gone head-to-head against a Republican.

  • 01-May-1976 (Primary): defeated Democratic incumbent District Attorney in Texas’ 90th Judicial District
  • 02-Nov-1976 (General): unopposed for DA TX 90th JD
  • 12-Mar-1996 (Primary): unopposed for Young County Attorney
  • 05-Nov-1996 (General): unopposed for Young County Attorney
  • 14-Mar-2000 (Primary): unopposed for Young County Attorney
  • 07-Nov-2000 (General): unopposed for Young County Attorney
  • 09-Mar-2004 (Primary): unopposed for Young County Attorney
  • 02-Nov-2004 (General): unopposed for Young County Attorney

Richie’s opponent Glen Maxey has prevailed in 10 elections, defeating 3 Republicans (4 if you count Dick Mallory twice), 1 Democrat and 1 Natural Law Party candidate.

  • 10-Mar-1992 (Primary): defeated Maria Luisa Flores (D) for SR51
  • 03-Nov-1992 (General): defeated Dick Mallory (R) for SR51
  • 08-Mar-1994 (Primary): unopposed for SR51
  • 08-Nov-1994 (General): defeated Dick Mallory (R) for SR51
  • 12-Mar-1996 (Primary): defeated Abel R. Ruiz and Eloy De La Garza for SR51
  • 05-Nov-1996 (General): defeated David Blakely (R) and Dan Wolfe (NL) for SR51
  • 10-Mar-1998 (Primary): unopposed for SR51
  • 03-Nov-1998 (General): defeated Fred Ebner (R) for SR51
  • 14-Mar-2000 (Primary): unopposed for SR51
  • 07-Nov-2000 (General): unopposed for SR51

Richie’s email correctly characterizes Young county as “Republican territory”, so a direct comparision of the leading candidates for state party chair based on the number of defeated Republican opponents is biased in favor of Maxey.
According to the Texas Secretary of State, the Democratic Performance Index (DPI) of Travis County is markedly higher in the two general elections in which Maxey and Richie faced voters.

In the 1996 General election, the Democratic candidates for President and Vice President (Clinton/Gore) defeated the Republican candidates (Dole/Kemp) in Travis County by a 52 to 40 percent margin. The same year, the Republican ticket carried Young County 54 to 36 percent, a swing in DPI of 16 points.

In the 2000 General election, the Republican candidates for President and Vice President (Bush/Cheney) carried both counties, but Young by a 15-point wider margin. The Democratic candidates (Gore/Lieberman) earned 42 percent of the vote in Travis, but only 27 percent in Young.

Interest in the state chair’s race will dominate the reporting when the convention convenes in Fort Worth Thursday. Convention delegates will decide the race Saturday. According to an email sent by Glen Maxey Friday, “there has not been a contested election for Chair in two and a half decades.”

Regardless of the outcome, Democrats are expected to rally behind whomever is elected and work to increase every candidate’s win-loss record versus Republicans. [Ed.: Thoughtful, fact-based comments received in response to this post will be given equal exposure regardless of the candidate that is being advocated.]

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