Who’s Afraid of Politics? Dallas Firms Want to Get Out the Vote and Set Texas on a Better Path

Here’s a new item for the business agenda in 2018: Get out the vote — in March, no less.This week, some of North Texas' largest employers joined a coalition to amplify business’ voice in politics. They want to go deeper than lobbying Austin, and their first goal is to get local companies to urge workers to turn out for the March primary.In Texas, a sliver of voters in the primary and runoff typically choose most elected officials. With gerrymandering and polarization, fewer seats are decided in the general election when turnout is higher.That’s one explanation for the rightward drift of the Texas Legislature, which recently focused on socially-divisive issues such as the bathroom bill and sanctuary cities ban. The business community opposed both and lamented that more attention didn’t go to improving public education and transportation.Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, the champion of the bathroom bill, won the 2014 primary runoff with just 3.5 percent of eligible votes.The North Texas Advocacy Coalition believes that a larger, more informed electorate — led by local employees — will lead to less-extreme, more business-friendly candidates.  Continue reading...

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