Days after El Paso County Commissioner Vince Perez wrote a scathing letter to Texas Sen. Jose Rodriguez, his peer, Commissioner David Stout responded with a letter of his own.
Perez had been critical of Rodriguez’ stance and tactics in the Duranguito debate and his endorsements in the most recent city council races.
On Monday, Stout penned a letter to Perez asking him not to speak for others and to “move on and leave behind” vendettas.
You can read the whole letter below:
I am responding in regards to a letter you recently sent to the Commissioners Court attacking a long time, well respected elected official, questioning his integrity and work ethic because he didn’t support your wife, Representative Claudia Ordaz-Perez, in her most recent bid for re-election to the El Paso City Council.
Though you may have been given permission by Rep. Ordaz-Perez to represent her point of view in this letter, any other of the elected officials you reference might be better served by reaching out to Senator Rodriguez themselves, instead of you self-appointing as their de-facto spokesperson and attacking him publicly on their behalf,
Your insinuation that your personal issue with the Senator would have any bearing on his ability to advance our community’s legislative priorities in Austin is nothing more than petty and disrespectful. The Senator is one of the most effective members of the Texas State Senate and is popular among members in both parties, even though he is one of the most liberal democrats in a sea of republicans. He has had a hand in shaping this community’s future and has worked tirelessly over 30 years to bring more funding to El Paso through his involvement in the State Legislature and earlier on in his career, the court of inquiry, to create lasting impacts, such as the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center and its Medical School, and to fight for inclusion and equality, not to mention taking on every single El Paso County bill since he has been in office. I am sure he will continue to be an outstanding voice for all of El Paso this session, and hopefully many more to come,
In your letter, you also assert that he has no tact because he may have supported a candidate other than an incumbent, which is, in my view, hypocritical. You, Rep. Ordaz-Perez and your staff over the years have been involved in and supported the campaigns of many people in a number of races ranging from school board to municipal to county, and even federal elections. You have also supported new-comers against incumbents, including my own race in 2014. So, if by your logic, our state senator’s involvement in any campaigns against sitting elected officials should call into question his integrity or willingness to work with whomever the winner might be, then your own integrity and tact should also be in question. If you have never been bothered by the risk of creating “division and discord” through your own actions, why do the Senator’s actions bother you? Why is it you can support whomever you think will do the best job in elected office and Senator Rodriguez cannot?
We are not going to litigate why the Senator may or may not have supported certain candidates, He had his reasons and those were his decisions to make, However, the elections are over, the dust has settled, and the City Council did not change substantively. Politics are politics, which you understand very well. So, let’s move on and leave behind, in that same dust, the personal vendettas. We all have so much to work on together, and when we let personal issues get in the way, it goes to the detriment of our constituents and our community.