Leppert said he worked together with gay rights groups and other typically liberal constituencies in order to successfully run the city of Dallas. But he maintained his beliefs have never wavered, regardless of public perception. Leppert explained that he was never asked for his position on gay marriage during his City Hall tenure.
"As mayor I thought it was my responsibility, and I think I did a good job, in leading the city where I engaged all groups," Leppert said. "On a lot of the issues I would disagree with the folks, but I would still find common ground."
Moving forward, Leppert believes his message of fiscal discipline will attract Texas voters. Before running for mayor, Leppert had a successful business career, including a stint as CEO of The Turner Corporation, one of the largest construction companies in the country. Leppert plans to tout his business experience in both the private and public sector throughout the campaign.
"You can talk spending, but actually doing it is another thing," Leppert said.
As a business-friendly candidate with an executive record, Leppert clearly has found his niche in the race. But another thing is clear: Leppert doesn't plan on letting anyone use that experience to paint him as a moderate.