This morning I received an email from Vincent Harding, chair of the Travis County Democratic Party with the subject line “Vote for the Democrat, Alison Alter.” I will not reproduce it in full, but it unfairly characterizes Councilmember Gallo as a pawn of Donald Trump. I felt it necessary as a Democrat to respond and I encourage everyone who agrees with me to do the same. My response is copied below.
Thank you for your email. I am glad to see my party remaining active in races close to home and vocal about issues that affect our local community.
_However, I am extremely disappointed to see this endorsement. Councilmember Gallo, despite being affiliated with the Republican Party, has shown herself to be a pragmatic centrist who is willing to engage all stakeholders and work toward consensus. In the policy area in which local government arguably has the most influence - land use and zoning - Councilmember Gallo is clearly the most progressive choice. It is clear from Mrs. Alter’s rhetoric that she intends to pursue policies that limit development, and thus the availability of affordably priced housing, within existing neighborhoods. Mrs. Alter supports the status quo - a paradigm that has led to de facto segregation on the basis of income and race. Exclusion is neither a democratic nor Democratic ideal. _
If the Travis County Democrats continue to value a candidate’s party label rather than their values or on the basis of their voting history, I will have to reconsider making monetary contributions to TCDP-affiliated clubs in the future.
member, Stonewall Democrats of Austin
member, Austin Young Democrats
member, Austin Tejano Democrats