Dave Wilson wins big

Don Hooper
Don Hooper

A Harris County jury recently put an end to the shenanigans of Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan and his office’s attempt to overturn the election of Houston Community College Trustee Dave Wilson.

After the election, the Harris County Attorney’s office claimed that Dave Wilson did not live in the district that he represents. Mind you, they only sought to remove him after he won the election and never questioned his residency when he filed to run.

Clearly, this was a blatant attempt by Vince Ryan, to remove Dave simply because he did not like him. Even democrats were critical of Ryan’s efforts – surprising. This is not a partisan issue. Manipulation of the legal system is improper. Today, it is Vince Ryan and Dave Wilson. Tomorrow, it is Devon Anderson and Denise Pratt.

I have known Dave Wilson a very long time and I like Dave because he is passionate about his beliefs and a warrior when it comes to wasteful government spending. Dave puts his money where his mouth is.

Dave Wilson at his residence.
Dave Wilson at his residence.

I have said from the beginning of this legal battle, Dave was a victim of selective enforcement. He was forced to spend his money fighting to maintain an unpaid position.

Many people know Dave for his radical stances, especially regarding homosexuality. Is this why Vince doesn’t like Dave? Maybe. I don’t know if Vince was on this crusade against Dave on his own or if he had other supporters; but, this “challenge” was a dog from the beginning.

Fortunately, Dave prevailed in court. It should be a very high bar to overturn an election and, thankfully, the jury thought so too. I have argued more than once that overturning elections makes us a banana republic.
Even if you don’t agree with Dave’s politics, the good guys won here on this issue. I was able to watch a portion of the trial, including the closing arguments. Dave’s attorney, Keith Gross, outshined Vince’s assistants.


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  1. Foolish Memo says

    It wasn’t “selective enforcement” when there was nothing illegal about it, in fact it was Ryan’s own PI (goon) that clinched it for Wilson in a video of him bringing groceries to the residence. We should be filing charges of prosecution misconduct and pushing for removal from office of Ryan. Why don’t we see the county attorney going after the thousands of illegally registered voters in the Democratic districts?

    • Don Hooper says

      I encourage you to contact Devon Anderson, I think technically the charge is official oppression. She does not take my calls;-) Don’t hold your breath, but stomp your feet, loudly.

  2. Paul Kubosh says

    Great article Don. Also does commissioner’s court have the ability to reign in the county attorney?

  3. Mainstream says

    Dave Wilson’s victory is interesting from a political science perspective in that until his victory, minority districts in the Houston area had reliably, regularly elected the candidate preferred by the dominant minority group within the district since about 1980 maybe 1970. The exceptions were instances in which a minority group divided its support among candidates. Clyde Lemon won with a slice of black support but overwhelming white support to an HISD slot in the 1990s, but was later displaced by a candidate with strong black support. Jessica Farrar and Garnet Coleman also won even though their primary opponents got more support from Hispanics and blacks respectively in their districts. Both Farrar and Coleman won their first primaries because the smaller white segment of the district voted overwhelmingly for them, and in Farrar’s case she also received strong support from the small black population in her district in her first run. I am not aware of any analysis of what share of black voter support Wilson obtained, but he certainly got a respectable 20 to 40 percent, I would guess. Zeph Capo’s victory this year might be another outlier, but that district may be as Anglo as Hispanic in citizen voting age population, or in registered voters, and certainly on election day based on voter participation.

    As for residency, I can think of scores of instances in which local politicians did not live in their districts or moved into their districts only recently. Even Congressional candidates often move into the districts in which they are running, even though not required. Neither the bulk of the voters nor the law seem to care about this, although I generally prefer not to vote for someone with few roots or contacts in my own districts.

  4. Texan by Choice says

    We live near Dave’s residence in the HCC district he is representing.. The Sunday after the election my husband met him while they were both waiting in line at the local sandwich shop. Another Sunday, I took one of my children to get their haircut at a local establishment. Dave’s name was on the sign in sheet. I don’t think he would be frequenting the local sandwich shop and barber shop on a Sunday if he lived in another part of town.

    After presenting evidence that he must have known did not prove his case, I really wonder about the honesty of Vince Ryan and what was behind this prosecution. All
    I can guess is that the election of someone that can not be bribed or manipulated by Mr. Ryan or his friends, even to a somewhat obscure office, must be threatening him in some way. I am not in the know of Harris County politics at all – just making some observations and figuring there must be some dots that need to be connected somewhere.

    • Don Hooper says

      The dot connecting begins and ends mostly with Commissioners Court and who works for whom.

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