Dallas County GOP chair Jennifer Stoddard-Hajdu is championing her leadership of the party, citing her communications initiatives and restabilizing of the party’s finances while arguing that her opponent, Lt. Col. Allen West, merely spouts empty rhetoric.

Stoddard-Hajdu’s leadership of the Dallas County GOP is currently being challenged by Lt. Col. Allen West, who formerly served as chair of the Texas GOP and U.S. representative for Florida.

The Dallas Express recently interviewed West, during which he highlighted his theme of “Fight Local … Win National.”

However, Stoddard-Hajdu says West is all talk and no action.

“What defines this race is, I’m results, and my opponent is rhetoric,” she said in an interview with DX. “He talks about, ‘It’s all local, it’s all local,’ … but he doesn’t say how. He doesn’t say what he’s going to do because he’s not done anything.”

“On the other hand, I have done a ton. I took a party that was disorganized, in debt, and not helping candidates raise money. I reestablished leadership positions. I have purchased data. I have built our own messaging platform, which allows us to text and email at an economical rate.”

Stoddard-Hajdu said that when she took the reins of the party in 2021, the Dallas County GOP was “disorganized” and “almost non-existent.”

She said the party was deeply in debt to the tune of about $30,000 and that she worked to reestablish “crucial” relationships with donors and raised about $1.2 million. She used the funds to restabilize the party’s finances and develop an efficient line of communication with local Republicans, she explained.

Stoddard-Hajdu said she established “critical infrastructure” and purchased voter cell phone and email data to cast a wider net when campaigning for local Republican candidates.

She told DX that this messaging initiative led to right-leaning candidates Sarah Weinberg and Jonathan Reeves winning their respective elections for DISD school board and Rowlett City Council last year.

“We are actually doing the hard work that’s necessary to make changes,” she said.

Furthermore, Stoddard-Hajdu argued that West has lived in Dallas County for a decade and has not participated in the local chapter of the Republican Party until now.

“I just have to say this about my opponent: Where’s he been? He’s lived in Dallas County for 10 years. He was active in the 2022 cycle running for governor. While he was doing that, did he promote any countywide races in Dallas? Did he help Faith Johnson run for [district attorney]? Did he help J.J. Koch run for county commissioner? Did he help Lauren Davis run for county judge? He did not.”

Stoddard-Hajdu also said that in March last year, the Dallas County Republican Party asked West for help with the May 2023 municipal races.

“He declined to help in any way,” she said. “We had 13 city council candidates. We asked him for his help, and he declined.”

In his previous interview with DX, West argued that the Dallas County GOP is in need of new leadership, evidenced by the fact that no Republicans are serving as county commissioner or county sheriff.

Stoddard-Hajdu argued that while this is technically true, West’s assertion ignores the demographics of Dallas County.

“He obviously hasn’t seen the data,” she said, noting that the population of Dallas County leans significantly more Democrat than Republican.

“That does need to change, but it doesn’t change overnight,” she explained. “It changes by doing exactly what we’re trying to do. We are reaching out to people through this messaging platform. When you have a county as large as Dallas, you have to know how to effectively communicate to people.”

Stoddard-Hajdu also noted that former Dallas County Commissioner J.J. Koch, a Republican, lost his most recent bid for the office after redistricting that led to District 2 leaning heavily Democrat.

“They made it so blue, it was very difficult for him to win re-election,” she said. “We have to change hearts and minds before we’re going to win … in Dallas. And that takes more than rhetoric. You have to roll up your sleeves and get down to do the hard work. … My opponent has demonstrated when he was chair of the state party that that’s not what he does.”

Stoddard-Hajdu asserted that the job of the party chair “is to unite all the people in your party.”

“Think about how critical that is in Dallas County, where we’re already behind the eight ball. I need all the Republicans to vote for Republicans, plus others. I appeal to all sides of the party. You have to kind of check your own personal political feelings at the door and be willing to work with everyone,” she said.

“My opponent is the exact opposite of that. He’s demonstrated that in every position he’s held. If you don’t agree with him, then you don’t get to participate.”

Stoddard-Hajdu said that 25 State Republican Executive Committee members who worked with West during his tenure as Texas GOP chair chose to endorse her over West.

Lastly, she noted it is “unfortunate” that she is “wasting [her] time” with a chair race rather than helping local candidates, with several municipal elections in Dallas County taking place in May, including Irving, Coppell, and Flower Mound.

“Dallas County is now a leader,” she said. “Why would we switch courses now, when we finally have momentum for the first time in many [election] cycles?”

The Republican Party primaries will be held on March 5, with the upcoming general election taking place on May 4.

Lt. Col. Allen West was not immediately available for comment.