Over the weekend, Texas Democratic Party Chair Boyd Richie announced that he would not seek another term when his current one expires next year. I’ve put his press release beneath the fold. I think Richie did some good work as Chair – the TDP is a lot more functional now than it was before he was elected – and I wish him all the best in his retirement, but I believe it’s time for a change, and I know that’s a widely shared sentiment. I don’t assign Richie any blame for what happened in 2010, but it’s clear we need some new ideas for how to better engage the base and boost Latino turnout. Whoever that is will have a lot to do in a short period of time when he or she gets elected next June. I hope all of the potential candidates for this job are up to that task. My thanks to Chairman Richie and his wife Betty for their service. Now let’s get ready for what comes next.
Dear fellow Democrat,
I want to share with you the following statement I’ve just released.
“Every day, as both state and national Republicans wage war on working families, the vital nature of our mission becomes more obvious.
“Knowing how important our work is – it is a very real and special privilege to be Chair of the Texas Democratic Party. I’ve enjoyed wonderful experiences, met scores of remarkable people, and I’ve learned a lot.
“As a three-time candidate for Party Chair, one of the things I’ve learned is that there is always a little friction between running for the position and doing the job. And frankly, we don’t have time for that.
“Betty and I have reached the difficult but honest conclusion that, at this point in time, our Party needs a Chair who is not encumbered by also being a candidate.
“Therefore, I have two announcements today. First, I will not seek re-election. Second, and perhaps more importantly, I will dedicate the next 14 months to working with you to build the strongest, most prepared Texas Democratic Party possible
“Now more than ever, Democrats must unite, because a Republican political agenda that threatens to shut down government, schools and nursing homes is one that has turned its back on the people.
“I have faith that our Party will meet that challenge. We have work to do. Given what’s at stake, we can afford to do no less.”
Your fellow Democrat,
Boyd L. Richie
Texas Democratic Party