The special election for SD-6 is this Saturday, and as the campaigns for Sylvia Garcia and Carol Alvarado reach the home stretch of this three-month sprint, Alvarado has turned to surprising quarters for help in the field.
Over the weekend, Brains and Eggs posted a link to a Facebook post in which Burt Levine, a Republican political consultant in Houston, noted that Republican State Senator Larry Taylor was blockwalking for Alvarado over the weekend. According to Levine's Facebook post, he blockwalked for Alvarado with Taylor and Wayne Faircloth, a former Republican candidate for HD-23.
Here is a screenshot of the Facebook post, shared from Levine's page:
It's a curious move. Why would Alvarado have support from the likes of Republican State Senator Larry Taylor?
After all, this is a fiercely Democratic district — the two Republicans in the January 26th special general election failed to garner a combined 10% of the vote — so I'm not sure if what the voters want here is someone who readily receives support from the other side of the aisle.
Today I called the Alvarado campaign office, and spoke to Marc Campos, a consultant working on her campaign. I asked if it was true that Taylor was blockwalking for Alvarado. He said that a number of Carol's current and former colleagues are volunteering for her, and that members from both sides of the aisle have come down to campaign for her. Campos said of Republicans and Independents, “they're coming out to the polls, so we have to have a discussion with them as we do with most of the voters in the district.”
It's an interesting choice. On January 26, Garcia and Alvarado were separated by less than the Republican share of the vote. Is Carol Alvarado is trying to win the run-off in a Democratic district by picking up Republican support, rather than turning out or persuading Democrats?
I find it disconcerting that in the final stretches of a race to replace a stalwart champion of progressive values, one of the two candidates is trying to win by courting Republican support — and apparently receiving it in such volumes.
The biggest challenge Democrats face in the Senate is holding our own and using the 2/3rds rule to block Republican legislation that is harmful to our state — and often disproportionately harmful to the residents of low-income urban districts such as SD-6.
And it certainly begs the question why Taylor and other Republicans are working so hard to make sure Alvarado gets elected.