Wilson, a conservative white Republican and anti-gay activist, was fed up with the “shenanigans” of the Houston Community College system and ran for a position on the Board of Trustees. However, since he was in a district of mostly black Democrats, Wilson decided to pull some shenanigans of his own:
Wilson, a gleeful political troublemaker, printed direct mail pieces strongly implying that he’s black. His fliers were decorated with photographs of smiling African-American faces — which he readily admits he just lifted off websites — and captioned with the words “Please vote for our friend and neighbor Dave Wilson.”
One of his mailers said he was “Endorsed by Ron Wilson,” which longtime Houston voters might easily interpret as a statement of support from a former state representative of the same name who’s also African-American. Fine print beneath the headline says “Ron Wilson and Dave Wilson are cousins,” a reference to one of Wilson’s relatives living in Iowa.
Wilson bested 24-year incumbent Bruce Austin by 26 votes and Austin is, unsurprisingly, calling foul. “I don’t think it’s good,” Austin told KHOU. “I don’t think it’s good for both democracy and the whole concept of fair play. But that was not his intent, apparently.”
Caught off guard by Wilson’s underhanded tactics, Austin tried to counter his opponent’s mailers with his own, in an attempt to reveal his true identity: a “right-wing hate monger.”
But Austin should probably have expected these kind of shenanigans from Wilson, who in 2009 launched a bigoted flyer campaign against openly gay Houston mayoral candidate Annise Parker. On the wave of that good will, Wilson decided to run for office, eventually launching an unsuccessful campaign for mayor of Houston in 2011.
Austin plans to ask for a recount, but his chances of overturning the results are slim. Meanwhile, with the Houston Community College system rife with corruption and scandal, Dave Wilson looks like he’s going to fit in just fine.
h/t: Huff Po