Politics & Government

EarBurner Podcast: Albert Black Wants to Be the Mayor of Dallas

This is the fifth installment of "10 Questions for 2019."

The Dallas mayoral election is May 4. We are interviewing the candidates to help you decide who is best qualified to have the No. 1 seat at City Council. Today we bring you Albert Black. It was quite a conversation. The highlight, for me, was hearing him explain why he is so upset with Eric Johnson (the one candidate, by the way, who has declined an invitation to join us on the podcast). Black says Johnson has started a “civil war.” Listen with the player below — the Johnson stuff begins at about 34:50 — or subscribe with the Apple podcast app or Spotify. After the jump, I’ve transcribed a bit of what Black said about Johnson.

Albert Black on Eric Johnson’s run for mayor:

“See, we’re setting ourselves up again, aren’t we? We’re asking for public corruption to stop, but then we’re financing someone that is running for mayor that is not campaigning, and he’s leading in fundraising, and he’s the last to get in. … It disappoints me. Eric Johnson — and I would like to say representative — Eric Johnson was in my son’s wedding. When I would see Eric Johnson in Austin, or he’d see me in Dallas, and we were around a group of people, if he acknowledged me, he’d say, ‘Mr. Black is like a second father to me.’ I wanted to be a second father. I wanted to be. I thought it was my time to be that mentor, like I’ve had so many great people that wanted to see me [succeed]. I would call him all the time in session and say, ‘Hey, man, I know you’re getting the people’s work done. I was just calling to root you on.’

“I didn’t think that we would ever come to this kind of contest, when that’s not what we need. What we need is collaboration between a business community that I’ve supported over the years and a representative with his kind of pedigree and capabilities. He’s capable of a lot of things. But you can’t get there if you are controlled by power at the level that he is. …

“I think what we’ve got right now is a puppet of Eric Johnson. And, quite frankly, my attitude is what it is because my feelings are hurt. My feelings are hurt. He did not have to start a civil war. Now he’ll have family member against family member, cousin against cousin, county backed up against county, blocks of people against blocks of people, when he did not have to do that. There was another way to get to the 30th Congressional District seat.”

[Editor’s note: Johnson’s campaign contacted us to say that he was not in Black’s son’s wedding; rather, he was at it. Black’s campaign concurred with the correction.]

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