Tuesday, May 31, 2016
Ramos was a virtual no-show prior to, during and after the primary election held on March 1st. Never having been involved within the party structure prior to filing to run for the county chairman position, one of the few things he campaigned on was his ability to 'diversify' the Harris County GOP. He also traveled around the county sharing the story of his Cuban-born father and the struggles he endured to make it to the United States to pursue the American dream.
During the run-off election, he was again, a no-show to ALL of the events held by various clubs and organizations. No interviews, no forums and not a single yard sign or push card that I saw. He seemed to be relying only on the power of the slate mailers. Bad news for Ramos was that they just didn't come through for him this time.
Steven Hotze's strategy, one of the more significant players in the slate mailer game, is generally to prey upon the absentee voters; the over 65-crowd who receive their ballot by mail, usually attached to a 'slate' of his recommendations. Well, as you can see by the results, Hotze did not receive the desired effect. Ramos was beaten almost two to one on absentee ballots.
So what can we attribute the Simpson win to, exactly? The power of the grass roots army that rallied around Simpson, that's what! He had teams organized at every meeting and every event. Not only that, but Simpson had phone bankers and block walkers going out during the week and every weekend leading up to election day.
The race had been virtually 'called' before even one precinct reported their results. As County Judge Ed Emmet said at the Simpson victory party, "This is really unusual. Normally, we don't declare a winner and introduce him before the first precinct reports. But in this case, the voters have overwhelmingly said that Paul Simpson is the greatest Harris County Republican Party Chairman of all time."
So as you can see, the slates appear to be on life support. I hope that across Harris County and the state of Texas that the grass roots will keep working together to deprive the slates of the influence they have had for such a long time. Encourage voters to do their own research! Remember, the people choose, not the slates! Slam the door on the slates!