Late Monday, Brooks Love and I had a brief chat about Dallas Friends of Public Education, the political action committee set to make its bow this morning with a 10:30 press conference at Dallas Independent School District HQ. (DFPE's Web site made its debut yesterday.) You know Love, right? Former Dallas City Hall elections manager who went on to become the political consultant behind the likes of TrinityVote (the group against the toll road) and Citizens Against the Taxpayer-Owned Hotel (the group, um, against the convention center hotel)? That guy.
Love says his PAC pack includes a few teachers' union reps, some DISD alum, former state Rep. and school board member Harryette Ehrhardt and state Sen. John Carona, who, despite the press release's promise, will not be attending this morning's conference. Its treasurer is Hobie Hukill, a librarian at W.W. Samuel High School and executive board member of Alliance/AFT. This go-round, Love says he's not necessarily against anything. Instead, this PAC's for DISD school board trustee candidates who're for what the PAC's for. Which is?
"We're gonna be talking to candidates and say, 'These are the things we are interested in,'" says Love. "We'll ask, 'How would you not lose another $84 million? Will you let see people see the budget before taxpayers actually vote on it? Will you promise that when you're supposed to have an election, you'll have it? Will you, just maybe, impose true ethical standards -- like, not having trustees be able to make hundreds of thousands off the district. And will you make us feel good that you'll actually keep your promises to the stakeholders in the DISD?'"
Not sure how many folks actually belong to the PAC at present -- Love says "we're still small, not five but not 500."
And he acknowledges that, yes, it's possible the DFPE won't make much of a dent in the November 3 special election to replace the three school board trustees who canceled their own election till the state shook its head in disgust.
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"This is a new organization," he says. "We are going to have an impact this November. But we're in it for the long haul. We'll be in there next May."