The two candidates in the running for State House District 2 in the July 14 GOP primary runoff, incumbent Rep. Dan Flynn of Van and Bryan Slaton of Royse City, continued a war of words Friday in their individual campaigns.
Flynn reiterated his previous calls for Slaton to disavow Empower Texans for remarks issued earlier this month against Gov. Greg Abbott.
The Texas Tribune reported on June 19 that staffers for the group were caught on an audio recording disparaging Abbott with profanity and joking about his wheelchair use.
Flynn said he’s repeatedly called for Slaton to return any campaign contributions he’s received from major funders of Empower Texans with no response.
“As someone who has faced mudslinging and false allegations from Empower Texans, I know what lengths this extremist organization will stoop to,” Flynn said in a statement issued Friday. “But for this organization to mock Gov. Abbott in such a bigoted way is a new low and completely beyond the pale. “
When asked by the Herald-Banner for comment, Slaton issued a statement that indicated he had previously issued a response on the same day he had heard about the remarks by the Empower Texans staffers.
“Their comments about our governor in no way reflect the values or convictions I hold,” Slaton said in reference to the earlier response. “I condemn their words 100 percent. You won’t have a problem when it comes to me telling you something is wrong, even if it’s in regard to actions of people who have associated with me in the past. The day I decided to run against Mr. Flynn for the third time was the day he publicly defended Speaker Bonnen, who was caught on tape offering a bribe to an employee of Empower Texans. Even when faced with a black and white issue of corruption, Mr. Flynn fought to keep the speaker in power, and excused his actions.”
The winner of the runoff between Flynn and Slaton will face Democrat Bill Brannon of Como in November. Early voting begins Monday.