First, before I begin this editorial, I would like to thank one of our readers, Reid Meyers for bringing to attention an error in yesterday's editorial. I wrote that McCartt & Associates donated the same amount to Amarillo Matters that Empower Texans' top donor did. I was incorrect, learning that the donor I mentioned was not the top donor. I apologize for the error.
At the Amarillo Pioneer, our job is to offer the facts and to let readers decide their point of view. Occasionally we make an error and I am more than willing to admit that. Unlike Amarillo Matters, I believe that arguments should be won by facts before fear.
Yesterday, Amarillo Matters issued a statement slamming downstate groups spending money in Amarillo races. Criticism has been levelled at these groups for various reasons and some is warranted, however Amarillo Matters should not be weighing in on the spending, based upon the organization's 2017 track record.
Funded by mega-donors, Amarillo businesspeople, downtown property owners, ex-politicians and other downtown dignitaries, Amarillo Matters spent hundreds of thousands of dollars campaigning for (and against) candidates for the City Council. Many of the tactics used by the group were unsavory and were not justly deserved.
In 2017, the group alleged and twisted truths to paint candidates as liars, anarchists, unfit candidates and other misnomers. It is unfortunate that these tactics won the race for Amarillo Matters and that the group essentially bought the election.
So with 2018 coming up, we have a suggestion for a New Year's resolution for Amarillo Matters. While we suggest that voters reject every candidate supported by Amarillo Matters, we also suggest that Amarillo Matters consider not using innuendo, lies, slander or other similar tactics in the upcoming elections. While these tactics may have worked for Amarillo Matters earlier this year, we believe that voters deserve much better.
If Amarillo Matters is serious about sustaining the integrity of our elections, they should respect voters enough to let their candidates win on merit rather than innuendo.
-Thomas Warren III, Editor-In-Chief