AUSTIN (AP) — Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa has traveled the state talking up the party’s chances in 2014, but along the way he found that half the county organizations are barely functioning — something he’s promising to change in order to win.
Democrats haven’t won a statewide office in Texas in two decades, something Hinojosa blames on failing to mobilize the party’s base — Hispanics, African Americans and liberals who make up the majority of Texans. Quoting Democratic strategist Paul Begala, Hinojosa says Texas is not necessarily a Republican state but a non-voting state.
County parties and Democratic clubs are the groups that raise awareness, money and votes. If they can’t raise money and make sure a Democrat runs for every local race and deliver voters to the polls, even the best statewide candidate has little chance of winning, he said in an interview with The Associated Press.
“The biggest problem in the last 20 years was failing to focus on local party organizations,” Hinojosa said. As an example, he said the Panhandle has a majority of minority residents, but Democratic turnout in the region is “miserable.”
That makes the party ripe for a makeover, something he’s been working on since becoming chairman two years ago. Hinojosa
was celebrating his second anniversary on the job when hundreds of angry women started packing legislative committee meetings in Austin to fight a ban on abortion after 20 weeks.
Those protests and Fort Worth Sen. Wendy Davis’ almost 13-hour filibuster of the bill attracted international attention
and amplified the…Read full story here: http://www.news-journal.com/news/state/chairman-dems-have-much-building-to-do/article_0f48dac1-a759-5ee8-846b-725cd70ec9c2.html