DALLAS — The last time Democrats won statewide office in Texas, Forrest Gump was on its way to winning the Oscar for best picture. Needless to say, it’s been quite a while -- 1994 specifically. And that’s one of the reasons the race for Texas Democratic Party Chair is being close watched.
Even though he has two opponents in the race for chair of the Texas Democratic Party, Carroll Robinson says he’s not running against anybody specifically.
He says he’s running because he believes he has a better solution. And Robinson describes his approach as rebuilding the party from the bottom up.
“I think we’ve got to have precinct chairs in every one of the 9,000 precincts, a county party chair. And we’ve got to give them specific instructions on what we need them to do to turn out a specific number of Democratic voters in each of those precincts to win the state,” Robinson said on this week’s Inside Texas Politics.
And to make sure Democrats win statewide office for the first time in nearly three decades, Robinson says he’d start with voters in rural Texas and with Hispanic voters across the state.
Part of that success, he says, starts with better messaging from the party.
Watch the segment below:
“I want to make sure the Democrats are anchored in opportunity, prosperity and progress. We have to restore an advanced progress in Texas as Democrats,” he said.
Robinson is currently an associate professor and interim associate dean of external affairs at the Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs at Texas Southern University.
He’s credited with helping to rebuild the Texas Coalition of Black Democrats, which he currently chairs. He is also a former member of the Houston City Council, winning an at-large seat that is elected citywide instead of an individual district.
“So, I know how to build a multi-racial, multi-generational, multi-regional coalition,” said Robinson. “You just have to have this understanding, all we need as Democrats is to believe we can win. And we just need one more vote. You win elections by having just one more vote than your opponent. And so, that’s the mindset and mentality I’m going to drive into the party.”
The chair of the Texas Democratic Party will be determined by delegates at the party’s biennial convention July 11-14 in Dallas.