TEXAS | TX-32 | TX-23 | TX-7

Dem Brand Struggles in Texas

The DCCC is already exploring subtle ways to help candidates there and in other states.

March 14, 2018, 10:53 a.m.

“Texas Democrats are imploring their party to send national money to Texas — but leave the national strategists home. Three candidates national Democrats sought to help in key races this month failed to advance from the first round of Democratic primaries. A fourth candidate, who the party committee attacked, saw a late surge of support from the grassroots and made it into a runoff.

Texas state party political director Cliff Walker: “The challenge for any party in Texas is the sheer scale of the state. We’re happy to have any investment of resources, whether it’s doors knocked, mail, digital, any sort of voter communication — that’s a net benefit to everybody.” But, “even among candidates and activists that were critical of the [Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee], the overwhelming sentiment has been: ‘Bring your resources, not your attacks.’”

“The national party’s primary troubles could be a sign it’s struggling to connect with Texans. … National Democrats acknowledge the party’s brand is in rough shape in Texas. The DCCC is already exploring subtle ways to help candidates there and other states without sounding alarm bells about its influence. Those moves could include digital ads, field staff, and cash transfers to the state committee – all tactics it’s recently deployed to help a special election candidate in a conservative district in Pennsylvania. … Eleven Texas Congressional races will feature May Democratic primary runoffs, including four of the races the DCCC is targeting.

“Among the grassroots, ‘Indivisible’ groups that popped up with fervor after President Donald Trump’s election bristle at the association with Democrats, despite backing what the groups call ‘progressive policies.’ They want to court new political activists who disagree with Trump, but aren’t yet ready to affiliate with a party that’s failed to win a statewide race in more than two decades in Texas.” (McClatchy)

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