Image: Ostensible Montgomery County GOP Chairman Wally Wilkerson, Jr., with another snake and Jennie Stephenson, October 13, 2018.
Montgomery County, November 8 – There are two local reasons why the 2020 Elections in Montgomery County will be somewhat ugly. This article is the second of a two-part series on the ugliness we’re likely to see in those election in which many local candidates run for office, United States Senator John Cornyn will run for re-election statewide in Texas, and, of course, President Donald Trump will seek a second term in the White House.
With Montgomery County providing approximately 42% of United States Senator Ted Cruz’s victory margin for all of Texas in 2018, it’s crucial to Senator Cornyn and President Trump that Montgomery County deliver a huge Republican margin of victory, so Republicans will carry Texas, which is, obviously, crucial to President Trump’s re-election.
Already, however, in the Woodlands Township Board of Directors, some major ugliness has arisen emanating from democrats and from their greatest Republican ally, Wally Wilkerson, Jr., the scofflaw Montgomery County Republican Party Chairman.
2019 General Election and Its Precursor in 2018
Wally Wilkerson, Jr., the 90-year-old Montgomery County Republican Party (MCRP) Chairman, is most certainly the best political friend democrats in Montgomery County have.
In 2018, Wilkerson made clear that he refused to acknowledge the Bylaws of MCRP even though he had presided over the meeting at which the County Executive Committee, composed of the elected Republican Precinct Chairs, adopted those Bylaws on June 16. On October 2, 2018, the Republican Party of Texas Officials Committee voted unanimously to make a formal finding that Wilkerson had acted to “disgrace” the Republican Party.
During the 2018 General Election campaign, the MCRP Steering Committee voted to give the MCRP Victory 2018 Steering Committee, which ran the Party’s General Election campaign, $10,125.00 out of MCRP funds. Wilkerson, however, refused to sign the check, so the Victory Committee never received the funds. Then to make matters worse, Wilkerson – along with Congressman Kevin Brady and his double-speaking campaign consultant – ran a fundraiser to raise money for Wilkerson’s office overhead and to take funds specifically away from the General Election campaign.
Without Wilkerson’s assistance, the grassroots conservatives, under the leadership of MCRP Vice Chairman Reagan Reed, Steering Committee member and Precinct Chairman Jon Bouche, and Victory 2018 Steering Committee Treasurer Kelli Cook, ran the strongest General Election campaign in the history of Montgomery County and provided 42% of the statewide winning margin to United States Senator Ted Cruz.
In early October, 2019, the GOP County Executive Committee passed a formal resolution in opposition to the Conroe ISD’s $677.3 Million bond package and in favor of Proposition 4, the Constitutional Amendment to ban a state income tax in Texas forever. Wilkerson refused to take any action as County GOP Chairman to lead the campaign for those positions. In fact, even though the County Executive Committee’s vote had been unanimous against the Conroe ISD bond package, Wilkerson openly support the passage of the bond in contravention to the direct wishes of the entire group of elected Republican Precinct Chairs.
On October 16, 2019, the GOP County Executive Committee endorsed Dr. Shelley Sekula-Gibbs, who ran (and won) for the Woodlands Township Board of Directors, Position 5. The vote was unanimous. Wilkerson presided over the meeting.
Dr. Sekula-Gibbs then contacted Wilkerson to ask for a formal endorsement letter from the Republican Party. After ignoring her first few attempts, Wilkerson finally responded that it wasn’t his responsibility, and that she should ask the Secretary or the Steering Committee and talk to Vice Chairman Reagan Reed. On October 19 and 20, Dr. Sekula-Gibbs made written requests to Wilkerson for an endorsement letter, which she could use in her campaign literature. Dr. Sekula-Gibbs also requested that Wilkerson send the endorsement to the Republican Party’s email list. Wilkerson never responded that he would follow the will of the County Executive Committee and provide a written endorsement letter or an e-blast to the Party’s email list.
To make matters worse, Wilkerson refused to lift a finger to boost Republican voter turnout in the November 5 General Election. In fact, on Election Day, Tuesday, November 5, Wilkerson sent an e-blast out to the entire Republican Party list. In that e-blast, Wilkerson failed to mention the Party’s endorsement of Dr. Sekula-Gibbs. Wilkerson failed to mention the Conroe ISD bond. Rather, Wilkerson criticized some Republicans and didn’t mention anything about overcoming the campaigning of democrats.
Wilkerson’s term as Republican County Chairman will come to an end with the March 3, 2020, Republican Primary Election. The clear frontrunner to replace Wilkerson is popular conservative leader Bouche. Perhaps, the Republican Party will rid itself of the Wilkerson snake once and for all.