Mayor Mike Rawlings, Exasperated by Rival, Speaks Out Against Kingston in Dallas Council Campaign

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings says he has a longstanding policy of not endorsing candidates who are challenging his incumbent colleagues. It's not right for a mayor to be picking candidates, he said. But he has come close to making an exception in the case of one council member: Philip Kingston, who is running for a third term against East Dallas lawyer Matt Wood.Rawlings said he longs so much for greater civility on the council that he would vote for Wood if he lived in the district that also includes Uptown, downtown and Oak Lawn."With all the abuse that I get from Mr. Kingston and the obstructionism that he demonstrates on a weekly basis and as good of a guy Matt is, it's tough not to root for him," Rawlings said. "It's a tricky situation that I'm presented with here."That tricky situation has been on full display as the campaign season heats up. While Rawlings won't be knocking on doors or raising money for Wood, the mayor's allies -- including Rawlings' son -- are doing so and have made the race a referendum on Kingston's caustic personality.But it's also the fight that Kingston wants to have -- one that has galvanized his supporters who are distrustful of City Hall and often suspect that the well-connected are pulling the strings.Kingston has spent the last four years cultivating an image as a new generation urbanist fighter who will take on the Dallas establishment. He believes his enemies' dislike of him proves that he is "on the right track.""I am so effective that this is their response," Kingston said.  Continue reading...

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