29 Jan Democrats looking to beat GOP Rep. Pete Sessions headline far north Dallas forum
Democratic candidates for Congressional District 32 on Sunday tried to convince party loyalists that they were the best suited to take down incumbent Republican Pete Sessions.
"I am not a politician. I’m a reporter," said Brett Shipp, who left his television job to run for Congress. "I seek justice for the small guy. I expose injustice. I stand up for big corporations. I stand up to the powers that be and I help the little guy."
Shipp said he left a job he loved because Donald Trump was elected president and Sessions was his "enabler and rubber stamp. He said the district needed new "leader-Shipp."
"To watch the erosion of our democracy in the hands of a president that we know is unfit to serve has been disgusting."
The Dallas forum was sponsored by the North Dallas Texas Democratic Women and the Far North Dallas Richardson Democrats. Over 50 candidates spoke to the groups, including three of the Democratic contenders for governor.
The crowded race for district attorney is one of the most watched contests in the country, as a diverse field of contenders try to move on the a November general election fight against Sessions, the chairman of the powerful House Rules committee.
Since the candidates agree on most issues, electability was a central theme in their remarks.
Ed Meier, a former State Department official and former senior adviser to Hillary Clinton, said it would take money, resources and a strong message to reach the "modern, independent voters."
"People want the best candidate to go out and beat Pete Sessions. I know how to get that done," said Meier, who has had the most robust fundraising among the candidates. "I know what it takes to get that done."
Meier said it was important for Democrats to rally around a strong candidate.
"If we stand together, the bullies cannot win," he said.
Former Department of Agriculture official Lillian Salerno said she rose from modest means to become a successful businesswoman and public servant. She said that Sessions didn’t care about working families.
"Too few people at the top have all the money and the power and working families in North Texas suffer," Salerno said. "The economy is not working for ordinary Texans… We need a fighter to go to Washington to represent working families."
Allred said "we struggled financially, but I had a lot of help from the people in the area…it gave me a chance in everything I’ve done…So I want to give back to his community that’s given me so much."
Dallas immigration lawyer George Rodriguez said he wanted to lead a movement of people standing up against Trump. He said he appeals most to women and Hispanic residents.
"I’m the most electable candidate we have to the general election," Rodriguez said. "We need a fighter to go to Washington to represent working families."
Aerospace engineer Ron Marshall said the election of Trump has the country spiraling out of control.
"We are not living in ordinary times," he said. "Preventing the United States from becoming a dictatorship has become the most important issue."
The Democratic primary for Congressional District 32 in March 6 and a runoff, which appears likely, would be held in May.
Sessions, the incumbent, faces light opposition in the GOP primary.