Cornyn challenger Dwayne Stovall gets a tea party endorsement
WASHINGTON–Republican Senate candidate Dwayne Stovall has garnered an endorsement from Grassroots America– We the People, a statewide tea party
group based in Tyler.
The endorsement buttresses Stovall’s recent claims that he’s the tea party favorite against Sen. John Cornyn. Rep. Steve Stockman, one of Cornyn’s seven
challengers in the March 4 primary, has claimed to be the tea party’s main man. Grassroots America disagrees.
“As far as we’re concerned, [Stovall’s] the only viable candidate in the race,” said JoAnn Fleming, executive director of Grassroots America. “We didn’t even
consider Steve Stockman because of his record of being less than honest with the media about his campaign finances. We also don’t feel he has the
The group has expressed a marked lack of enthusiasm for the incumbent, saying Cornyn does not fight for true conservative values.
“We find [Stovall’s] values and his assessment of the big issues facing our nation—the debt, the things we don’t take care of, like veterans—line up with our own
values. That’s why we support Mr Stovall,” Fleming said.
She also touted his community service, including a stint on a local school board in Cleveland, Texas.
Stovall doesn’t have Cornyn’s long record of statewide service and winning campaigns, deep pockets, or incumbent status. And he’s not a master of attentiongrabbing
Twitter stunts like Stockman. But he’s made some inroads, according to leaders of some local tea party groups across the state.
He also has his own social media strengths. He has more than 10,000 followers on Facebook and a fairly slick and active website that solicits–and seemingly
gets–engagement from supporters, who can sign up and post their own personalized messages endorsing Stovall.
Fleming acknowledged that with limited funds and dwindling time, Stovall has a tough fight ahead. She acknowledged that he doesn’t have some of the advantages
of his opponents, but suggested that’s a good thing.
“We know he has a big race, an uphill climb ahead of him. But we want to encourage people of his stature to enter races like this,” she said.