Texas GOP Chairman Allen West Trolls Lamar Co. Democrats After Racist 'Oreo' Remark

Texas Democrats are in hot water following a local chair's "Oreo" remark.EXPAND
Texas Democrats are in hot water following a local chair's "Oreo" remark.
Photo by Brad Switzer on Unsplash
Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

On Thursday, Republican Party of Texas Chair Allen West sent the state’s Democrats two packages of Oreos and a handwritten note.

“Enclosed you will find (2) packages of Oreo cookies to share and enjoy,” West wrote in elegant cursive scrawl. “Please forward one package to the disgusting racists over at the Lamar County Democrat Party.”

Rather than satisfying his opponents’ sweet tooth, West was rubbing sugar in an open wound.

Earlier this month, controversy erupted over a since-deleted Facebook post made by the chair of the Democratic Party in Lamar County, located around 116 miles northeast of Dallas. In it, Chair Gary O’Connor used the word “Oreo” in reference to Republican U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, who is Black.

The disparaging term is meant to describe a Black person who has adopted the attitudes and behaviors characteristic of white, middle-class society, according to Dictionary.com.

After President Joe Biden delivered a congressional address, Scott gave the official Republican response and said “America is not a racist country,” according to The Texas Tribune. Scott also said Democrats have hurled racial epithets at him, such as “Uncle Tom.”

Scott’s speech upset many Democrats, who claimed that GOP state legislators are aiming to impose additional voting restrictions that would disproportionately affect voters of color.

Following O’Connor’s post, multiple prominent Texas Republicans demanded his ouster, including Gov. Greg Abbott and U.S. Rep. Pat Fallon, whose district covers Lamar County.

Shortly after, O’Connor tendered his resignation, which the county’s Democratic Party opted not to accept. Instead, the organization vowed to recommit itself to conducting discourse with “anti-racist, pro-reconciling attitudes and language.”

The party’s refusal to accept O’Connor’s resignation further outraged conservatives, eventually culminating in West taking to social media to condemn its decision. In one video posted to Twitter, he holds a package of Oreos while chastising the party. In another, West accuses them of having supported institutionalized racism, such as with Jim Crow laws and slavery.

West also said the Democratic Party sees “independent-thinking Black men and women as a threat,” and called Black Democrats “sellouts.”

“So, stop calling everyone else white supremacists and racists and all of these other things,” West said, “because you — the Lamar County Democrat Party, the Texas Democrat Party — you’re the real racists, and I despise you.”

In an emailed statement, Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa said it’s hypocritical of West to call out racism “only when convenient for Republicans.” Over the past few years, West ignored the racist and violent rhetoric used by former President Donald Trump and other Republican lawmakers, which contributed to a nearly 20% rise in hate crimes nationwide, Hinojosa said.

Meanwhile, O’Connor has apologized to Scott in a letter, telling the Washington Examiner that he’d embarrassed himself and his party.

In an email to the Observer, O’Connor said he is grateful that the Lamar County executive committee gave more weight to his decades of work fighting racism than they did to “one inappropriate word in one Facebook post among tens of thousands.”

“As for Chair West's commitment, I'm sure the TDP [Texas Democratic Party] staff will enjoy the treat,” O’Connor said.

West has a knack for political showmanship. At a press conference on Wednesday, he challenged a tardy reporter to drop and do 30 pushups, and when they refused, West did them himself.

Seems like a good way to work off some Oreos.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.