The Impact of Recent Events on Public Opinion on Campaign Finance Transparency Reforms in Fort Worth, Texas

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is the independent regulatory agency responsible for managing and enforcing federal campaign finance law. Reports submitted to the FEC are available on their website, while reports submitted by local filers must be accessed through their local filing authority. Last month, the Fort Worth Report invited two researchers from TCU to imagine a session on listening as part of their Candid Conversations. The day the Fort Worth Nature Center presented its new observation platforms, bison took a long time to come out and play. In 1971, Congress consolidated its previous reform efforts into the Federal Election Campaigns Act, instituting stricter disclosure requirements for federal candidates, political parties, and political action committees (PACs).

This April, the Fort Worth Report highlighted individuals and institutions across Tarrant County that are working to create a more sustainable community. District 11, with five candidates running for the seat on the newly created council, has long been ignored by the political center of Fort Worth. Alan Blaylock won against his opponent Brandon Jones in the May 6 elections for Fort Worth City Council District 10. District 4 has previously been supported by influential political groups such as the Fort Worth Fire Committee for Responsible Governance and the Public Safety Committee of the Fort Worth Police Officers Association. Many donors continue to support current Fort Worth council members two years after they first achieved their position in public office. Rachel Behrndt is a government accountability reporter for the Fort Worth Report in collaboration with KERA. While Parker raised more than any other candidate for the Fort Worth City Council, his total is nearly a third of what he collected this time two years ago during his first run for mayor. The Fort Worth Police Officers Association and the Fort Worth Fire Committee for Responsible Governance are also powerful political voices in the Fort Worth elections.

Some of Fort Worth's most established business and political leaders are letting their money do the talking in the city's next elections. Martinez also has the support of Fort Worth's political class, which includes donations from County Commissioner Roy Brooks, prominent businesswoman Rosa Navejar and former Councilman Sal Espino. The lack of money invested in the race could be indicative of a wait-and-see approach on the part of Fort Worth's business interests. Recent events have had a significant impact on public opinion regarding key campaign finance transparency reforms in Fort Worth, Texas. The city's citizens are now more aware of how their money is being used and who is influencing their local elections.