News Retracts on Broden, Mark Davis Argues Back

The “overthrow the government” soundbite was too much for the newspaper that had earlier endorsed Stephen Broden over Eddie Bernice Johnson in the 30th. Today it pulled back.

Mark Davis counters this morning with a measured (and, you can feel it, sadddened) defense of Broden that I think is well worth reading. His bottom line:

There is a long list of things that are arguably true but will get you eaten alive on the campaign trail. I’m guessing Pastor Broden has learned this. Are we as certain that his opponent has learned the depth of her malfeasance in this scholarship scandal — or the degree to which her ideas, and those of her party, have banished the 30th District from the growth and progress enjoyed by virtually every other part of North Texas?

As to the comment itself, Broden has impeccable antecedents for his philosophical position, even if it makes for a disaster on the campaign trail:

What country ever existed a century and a half without a rebellion? And what country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

That, of course, was Thomas Jefferson in 1787.



Get a weekly recap in your inbox every Sunday of our best stories from the week plus a primer for the days ahead.

Find It

Search our directories for...









View All

View All


  • bill holston

    Interesting Post and article.

    I commend the DMN for its retraction. Certainly, I’m thankful that Thomas Jefferson and the other founders believed that. We threw off Tyranny for a Republic.

    The work was finished however with the ratification of a Constitution, sealed in blood with the Civil War.

    It is not just a political disaster, it is highly irresponsible to state that armed rebellion is ‘on the table’.

    He’s entitled to that view, if that’s what he believes of course, but it should be recognized for the extremism it is.

  • Steve

    Armed rebellion is always on the table after Republicans loose an election. But when they win, you best shut and do as your told, you anti-American hippie.

  • David

    We live in a democracy. In a democracy, the ballot box is mightier than the bullet or bayonet.

    What Mr. Broden was suggesting was that the will of the people–should such will not match his own–be disregarded in favor or armed rebellion by the minority.

    This is antithetical to the very premise of constitutional democracy.

    As to your Jefferson quotation, I do not think he was speaking of a democracy–but feel free to prove me wrong, Wick.

    And Steve is right–it seems elections “only have consequences” when Republicans win…

  • EmilyMc

    I feel for the 30th. One of these two wackjobs will be representing them. But to be honest, I have not heard any outcry. This is what you get with complacency.

  • JS

    Actually, we live in a republic.

  • Steve
  • Julie

    Instead of blaming EBJ, Mark Davis should blame Fox News, the Kochs, and Rove for fostering ignorance and violence. Maybe a return to reasoned discourse will bring you reasoned candidates.

  • James

    Where was Mr. Davis “depth of h[is] malfeasance” for Rep Driver? His crime was indeed, a crime.

  • Jackie Dale

    Come on folks, Broden is a nut job. Whacko.
    Delusional and a bigot. Isn’t time we stop giving the United States more amunition to the Texas redneck desegregation talk. Isn’t Perry enough?

  • Elitist

    Julie, I’m sure you will agree that a return to reasoned discourse requires an educated public.

    However, education and being educated is denegrated as “elitist.” Universities are factories for employees. The idea that they are institutions to bring out the potential of the mind is a tolerated side issue.

    Those intellectual elists that go by names Jefferson, Madison, and Hamilton would not be tolerated today by the Republicans or the Tea Party.

  • tested

    I understand why the News retracted its endorsement, but I also blame them for not looking up the youtube clip of this guy made a year ago and asking him about it when they talked to him.

    Beyond that, Mark Davis is absolutely correct on this issue. Whatever theoretical discussion Broden may have been involved in that got him to this discussion of armed rebellion pales in comparison to EBJ’s horrendous record of non-achievement.

    Broden won’t win. He was never going to win this seat. He might have made it close to 40% before this came out, but not now. It’s a shame too because I think he’d be a great congressman for this district.

  • Sammy

    It does make you wonder exactly what world the DMN editorial board is living in that they couldn’t do even the most minor research about Pastor Broden and quickly learn that he is on the fringe of the fringe.

  • John M

    It would be one thing if this was just an isolated incident but the “Pastor” has a long history of abhorrent statements and actions, everything from saying that gays should be unemployable, evolution is a myth and and a conspiracy to kill of black people, to an arrest at the White House and willfully violating IRS tax laws.

    This is just a little glimpse at the real Broden and hopefully the rest will trickle out over the next couple of days for those that don’t wish to Google it now.

  • Tom

    If a GOP rep had handed out the scholarship money and the Democrat wanted violent overthrow, would Mark Davis still write his column?

  • Travis McGee

    Broden and his ilk haven’t “a decent respect to the opinions of mankind” since that “requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation,” a separation from taxation WITH representation–their only true grievance. Broden’s masters (thus Broden and his ilk) want no taxation no matter how well represented they are–represented more than ably by their lawyers and flaks and lobbyists and Heritage Foundation/AEI “scholars”-for-hire and faux-outraged lickspittles of the conservative media. Just mention out loud to your congregation of 10 people how the Koch Family and the Coors Family are being mistreated and should keep more of their God-given money and–guess what?–here is $500,000 to run for Congress! “Now boys, pay lip-service to the pro-life stuff and the pro-gun stuff and the home-school stuff so that we can pass the only things that matter: the Eliminate the Inheritance Tax bill and the Eliminate the Capital Gains Tax bill. Haven’t you heard the good word? Cutting taxes creates jobs.” Forward into the Gilded Age! Hallelujah!