Royce West helped flip Dallas County for Democrats in 2006. Could he flip Texas in 2020?
Feb 13, 2020
In a crowded Democratic field to challenge U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, the longtime state senator is betting on his decades of experience as a consensus builder.
Royce West was not on the ballot in 2006, the year Democrats swept Dallas County and wrested a GOP stronghold into Democrats’ firm grip. But the longtime state senator still earned a spot onstage at the Adam’s Mark Hotel for the victory party, memorably mimicking a Johnny Carson golf swing and serving as hype man for the members of his party who joined him that night in elected office.
“All these Democrats,” he told winning candidates late that night, as favorable returns poured in, “they are fired up.”
And when a reporter turned to him, he summed it up nicely.
"Democrats have long been on the outside looking in," West told The Dallas Morning News. “We now have the leadership of this county."
Thirteen years ago, West was a pivotal player in a campaign to flip Dallas County the same way his party now hopes to flip Texas. This year, West aims to be on the ballot himself if the big swing comes, competing against Republican incumbent U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, who is expected to easily win his own primary. But first, West, the elder statesman in a crowded field with no clear front-runner, has to make it through the March 3 primary.