Elections 2021IssuesLocal NewsPaul Ridley Defeats Dallas Councilman David Blewett, Police Association Endorsed Candidates Lose Runoffs

In total, four incumbents are departing the Dallas City Council. Three reached their term limit and David Blewett lost to Paul Ridley.
June 8, 2021
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Receiving 61 percent of the vote, Paul Ridley has defeated Councilman David Blewett in the runoff to represent Dallas City Council District 14. In Dallas County, there was less than 10 percent turnout in Saturday’s runoff election.

Ridley’s campaign said his priorities include “providing the police needed resources while holding them accountable for results” and “ensuring transparency, equity and inclusiveness in city decision making.”

Saturday’s runoff elections in Dallas also did not end well for Barry Wernick, Leland Burk, and Sana Syed, who were the runoff candidates endorsed by the Dallas Police Association (DPA).

Jesse Moreno will succeed Mayor Pro Tem Adam Medrano, who was ineligible to run for reelection due to term limits, after Moreno received 58 percent of the vote to Syed’s 42 percent.

“Losing can be good for the soul. It helps light a fire that no one can put out,” Syed tweeted on Monday. “Our work to change this city has just begun. Thank you to everyone who voted, block walked, donated and helped us win almost half the vote.”

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Moreno also thanked his supporters and wrote, “I’m honored, and I look forward to getting to work for you!”

Wernick lost to Jaynie Schultz, who received 54 percent of the vote. Schultz will succeed Councilman Lee Kleinman (District 11).

“Thanks so much for your prayers, love, support, and encouragement! It didn’t turn out the way we had hoped. But we gave it a good fight without resorting to name calling or personal attacks,” Wernick wrote on social media.

“We stuck to the issues. As a result, my opponent adopted our whole platform. And whether the voters voted for me or for her, they voted for our priorities. And that’s a huge win for the people of Dallas.”

Schultz also thanked her supporters in a social media post and said she was “honored and excited” and looked forward to representing the district.

“After a long and challenging race, honesty, integrity, and experience prevailed. I want to thank all of my incredible volunteers, advocates, neighbors, and voters who made this campaign possible,” Schultz wrote. 

Gay Donnell Willis, who won 54 percent of the ballots in District 13, defeated Burk and will succeed Councilwoman Jennifer Gates.

“We Won! I could not have done this without you! Your hours of volunteering, contributing, going door-to-door, talking to neighbors, and getting out to vote — this grassroots campaign beat an opponent that outspent us at least six to one!” Willis wrote on social media, adding that Gates has committed her “support in the transition.”

Kleinman and Gates had also reached their term limits and were not eligible to run for reelection.

In addition, District 7 voters reelected Councilman Adam Bazaldua, who defeated Kevin Felder with 64 percent of the vote. In District 4, Councilwoman Carolyn King Arnold won her seat again with 55 percent of the vote against Maxie Johnson’s 45 percent.

While the runoffs did not go well for the DPA, council members Adam McGough (District 10) and Cara Mendelsohn (District 12), both of whom were backed by the police association, won reelection in May.

Incoming council members will be inaugurated on June 14.

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Hayden Sparks

Hayden Sparks is a reporter for The Texan. He has coached high school competitive speech and debate and has also been involved in community theater and politics. A native Texan, Hayden served as a delegate at the Republican Party of Texas Convention in 2016. He is on track to receive a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Liberty University. In his free time, Hayden is known to take walks around the neighborhood while listening to random music on Spotify.