Mayor Eric Johnson announced on Friday that he is leaving the Democratic Party and registering as a Republican.
In an opinion piece published by The Wall Street Journal, Johnson said he was changing his party affiliation, citing a propensity on the part of Democrats in U.S. cities to eschew public safety in favor of social programs.
“Too often, local tax dollars are spent on policies that exacerbate homelessness, coddle criminals and make it harder for ordinary people to make a living. And too many local Democrats insist on virtue signaling — proposing half-baked government programs that aim to solve every single societal ill — and on finding new ways to thumb their noses at Republicans at the state or federal level,” Johnson wrote.
He went on to assure his constituents that a change in party affiliation would not result in a change in his priorities as mayor of Dallas.
“I have no intention of changing my approach to my job. But today I am changing my party affiliation. Next spring, I will be voting in the Republican primary,” Johnson wrote. “When my career in elected office ends in 2027 on the inauguration of my successor as mayor, I will leave office as a Republican.”
Johnson was first elected as mayor in 2019 and went on to handily win re-election in May, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.
“During the decade I spent serving my hometown in the Texas House of Representatives, I was a Democrat in a Republican-controlled Legislature. I prided myself on finding common-sense solutions and worked closely with my conservative colleagues to improve policing, public education and water infrastructure,” Johnson wrote.
“I was never a favorite of the Democratic caucus, and the feeling was mutual. By the time I was elected mayor — a nonpartisan office — in 2019, I was relieved to be free from hyperpartisanship and ready to focus on solving problems.”