Big Names Endorse District 83 Candidates as Campaign Gets Dirtier - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/1/06

Big Names Endorse District 83 Candidates as Campaign Gets Dirtier

The race for District 83 house representative is heating up even more as two candidates took shots at each other's campaigns. Van Wilson called for Delwin Jones to stop running a TV ad that states Wilson's accusations of Jones' voting record are false. Wilson says Jones has voted with liberal democrats on numerous issues, including voting for illegal immigrants to obtain drivers licenses and increases in property and payroll taxes.

Meanwhile Jones says Wilson is misquoting his voting record and will not stop running the ads. "It's very interesting he'd want me to remove mine when I've got the record to prove every statement I've made is exactly according to the recorded vote," commented Jones.

However, Wilson said, "I'm embarrassed my state representative, who's been there for 28 years will not stand up and defend his record and that he would call the official house journal a lie."

NewsChannel 11 has obtained copies of the voting records the Jones and Wilson campaigns are citing. We are researching how Jones voted, we've also requested the information from the state office in Austin and we'll bring you that report as soon as it becomes available.

In the meantime both candidates have brought in big names to help boost their campaigns. Mayor Marc McDougal has endorsed Van Wilson and State Senator Robert Duncan announced his endorsement for Delwin Jones. Both say it's because they want the best representation for District 83, which their candidate can provide.

Last week Duncan endorsed incumbent Jones for District 83 representative. This weekend a television and newspaper ad announcing his endorsement reached households across the South Plains.

Duncan has worked with Jones for 14 years and says his experience and previous knowledge will help him continue to decide what's best for District 83. "He knows when not to vote in favor of an issue. You cannot threaten Delwin and get him to change his mind. Delwin will vote what he believes is right," said Duncan.

Duncan and Jones say opponent Van Wilson has taken campaign contributions from outside sources, something that's not illegal, but Duncan says that could influence Wilson's vote. "I think it symbolizes the notion that someone from outside of Lubbock is trying to buy the district so they can get the result they want in a vote," said Duncan.

Mayor Marc McDougal endorses Van Wilson. "I believe Van has the energy," commented McDougal.

A mail-out with McDougal endorsement message went out this weekend. McDougal says Wilson's campaign contributions are proof he has the energy to develop new relationships and gather support needed for West Texas issues. "He has support not only from throughout the district, but also from across the state so he has already started building relationships," McDougal pointed out.

He also says with so few West Texas area representatives, we need to together statewide support for issues important to West Texas, which McDougal says can happen through Wilson's ability to network. "If we have an issue important to us we have to rely on friends down state or across state to stand up and vote with us. I believe Van is capable of going and building those relationships," said McDougal.

Wilson says the Texas Republican Legislative Campaign Committee (TRLCC) has given him campaign contributions in the neighborhood of $400,000, however Wilson says he's never had any conversation with them before or after he received the contributions.

NewsChannel 11 caught up with Frank Morrison, also a republican candidate running for the District 83 seat. He spent the day campaigning in Levelland. He's received endorsements from several state agencies.

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