The Jan. 28 special election is heating up for Texas’ 28th State House District, where Democrats are hoping to score a pickup that could better position them to flip the entire chamber in the fall.
Politico reports that the progressive group Forward Majority is spending $100,000 on TV, digital, and mail buys in support of Democratic Eliz Markowitz. Forward Majority’s TV spot is available, and it goes after Republican Gary Gates over child abuse allegations that were brought to the surface during his unsuccessful 2016 campaign for a seat on the Texas Railroad Commission.
The narrator declares that Gates’ “own kids told Child Protective Services he forced them to take vomit-inducing medicine” and “handcuffed and beat them with a wooden board.” She continues, “Gates then spent a fortune to shield alleged abusers like himself. Now he wants to represent us in Austin?”
In 2000, CPS removed Gates’ 13 children from his home, saying they were in “immediate danger.” Soon after, a judge returned the kids and the case was dropped, but not before serious accusations were levied against Gates, including allegations that he made his children miss meals as a form of punishment. CPS dropped the case within a year, but Gates went on to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a lawsuit against the agency, which ended up changing some of its policies to make it more difficult to take children out of homes.