It’s beautiful spring day in Dallas. But in the mayor’s race, we have our first “snowflake” reference.
In some since-deleted Facebook activity, former state Rep. Jason Villalba got into it with a couple commenters who took issue with the tone of his rhetoric.
“With great respect, I don’t give a rats ass about what you think about the way I speak,” he wrote. “If you don’t like me or what I represent, vote for one off [sic] the 17625 options.”
The comments were under a post on Villalba’s campaign Facebook page about the City Council’s decision to take down the Confederate monument in Pioneer Cemetery. The original post, put up at about 8 p.m. Thursday and since edited, called mayoral candidates Lynn McBee and Mike Ablon “mamby pamby politicians.”
One commenter said that was “simultaneously sexist and homophobic.”
“I don’t give a whit about what a snowflake like you thinks about my language,” Villalba responded. “You don’t like it, vote for someone else. Griggs I suspect.”
He has since deleted both of the comments. He took some of the more excitable language out of the original post, mamby pamby included.
In an email on Friday, Villalba blamed the Thursday night activity on other people who have access to his Facebook:
I was made aware of this situation this morning. Suffice it to say, neither the text of the original posts nor the comments were my voice. Lots of staffers and folks have access to my campaign and personal passwords. Clearly, I need to change them.I have edited the posts to be more in line with how I would have worded them and deleted any comments that were less than gentlemanly.
Villalba and social media have a speckled history. In a 2017 spat, he called a conservative blogger a, “fat, oafish dufus.” He later apologized (even hashtagging #Apology). He’s also taken heat for his blocking habits.
Elsewhere on Facebook on Thursday, Villalba—or his staff—pleaded to the “Dallas County Republicans” group about his conservative record. He told the group that they could “sit on your hands and watch HRC clones become your next mayor,” a reference to Hillary Clinton’s Dallas mayoral endorsement of candidate Regina Montoya this week. But that: “YOU have the ability to tell Obama, Beto and Progressives to go pound sand.” The post begins with an introduction (“My name is Jason Villalba and I am running to be mayor of Dallas.”). But by the end of it, the writer is referring to Villalba in the third person, such as: “He has a record of delivering…” and “He is our guy.”
Villalba’s sudden combative appeal to a certain brand of conservatism marks a change. After Dallas County went overwhelmingly blue during the November election, Villalba spent the first part of his campaign talking about working across the aisle. A Democrat spoke at his campaign announcement in January. But since, he’s veered to the right, decrying pulling down the Confederate statues, urging the city to work with the Legislature instead of oppose them, and advocating for a reduction in city regulations that he says will scare off new businesses.