Sunday, October 4, 2015

Joe Barton's Democratic Opponent has already done the impossible. Finding solutions is his business.

By Faith Chatham - October 4, 2015  - The first of a two-part series.

David E. Cozad is a "builder". A leader who mentors and teaches, assists and equips, he blends his dual career path as educator and innovator in the telecommunications industry with common sense practicality and metrics driven research and evaluation.

Anyone who has a cell phone which sends text messages or has voice mail has a device in which David Cozad played an instrumental role. He was the Project Engineer on the software development team at Motorola which developed and implemented service for the first cell phone with text messaging and voice mail capability. He led the "roll-out" of  that cellular phone service in the Western part of the USA, Thailand and Argentina.  At the time, most people in the industry thought what his team accomplished was "impossible" and "could not be done."  David was assigned to lead the team because he was known as someone who could make things happen.

He applied problem-solving, solution finding skills in leading others to change the telecommunications industry. Those are the same skills which are needed in Congress today.

His love for his country, and more specifically, his deep concern that the policies of many in Congress will have on his grandchildren generation, prompts him to continue placing most personal things aside and working diligently to build a campaign organization to win the US 6th Congressional Seat. He is determined to build the infrastructure which will enable logical, problem-solving Democrats who truly care for this nation to win seats from Tea Party GOP incumbents from the "courthouse to the White House."

 He's a realist who knows that challenging a 30+ year Republican incumbent for Congress takes more than a two-year investment. He's been building his campaign organization for years. He ran for U.S. Congress in the 6th District against Joe Barton in 2010.  He had no intention of running again in 2014. He had been hired as treasurer for another candidate was forced to drop out due to health problems. David had served on numerous campaigns of other Democrats who had challenged Joe Barton. He knew the district. When he was drafted in late November 2013 to run in 2014, he  decided to make that year count by using it to build an organization which can take the seat away from the Republicans in 2016.

Campaigning for David Cozad involves a lot of listening and connecting. He's been steadily building a base of supporters. In 2014 several high profile campaigns were already based in Tarrant County before he declared. Most volunteers and donors were already committed to other campaigns. He was the first candidate in Tarrant County to kick off a 2016 Campaign. He is encouraged at the response of local activists.
David believes (and practices) that Democrats will not win unless they support each other up and down the ticket. He sees helping to build the party in the rural counties as a necessity and responsibility. Anytime there is a Cozad for Congress event, other candidates are welcomed to speak and distribute literature. In 2014 when preparing for the Texas State Democratic Party Convention his staff was stretched thin. It was a "no-brainer" for him when deciding to stretch a bit further and be the local organizers who enabled the Ready for Hillary Super PAC to have a booth at the state convention. David hauled the furnishing and his Chief of Staff oversaw staffing for both booths.

The first time David ran, the District was much larger and much "redder". It stretched almost down to College Station. When redistricted in before the 2012 election, the district became much more compact. Now the majority of voters are in Tarrant County. Most are in Arlington but Meadowbrook and Hanley in Fort Worth is a very blue part of the District. In 2014 he carried every precinct in Meadowbrook and Handley and all the precincts in SE Tarrant County. There are even a few precincts which previously had voted majority Republican north of I-30 in Arlington which were carried by Cozad in 2014.

He operated on a shoestring in 2014. He is expert at making every campaign dollar count. However, without enough to spread around, much of the district did not get his message in 2014. He is hoping to change that this year. That is why was the first U.S. Congressional Democrat to declare for 2016. He is steadily recruiting and training volunteers.  Intense party building is a way of life for the Cozad Team for the two rural counties in the district (Navarro and Ellis).

Navarro's Democratic Party had to be reorganized from the ground up. County Chair Linda Mertz was appointed by the State Chair and won re-election after the previous County Chair became incapacitated. There were no precinct chairs or County Executive Committee. Cozad and his team spent considerable time in Navarro in 2014 helping to recruit and train precinct chairs.

Navarro County Chair, Linda Mertz, and Navarro County Democratic Precinct Chairs meet with David Cozad and Faith Chatham at a County Executive Committee Planning Retreat in early 2015.

Every decision he makes includes weighing its impact on the more vulnerable members of the community and future generations. He is firmly committed to applying logic and common sense to public policy planning. As a businessman, he knows that destroying the planet for short-term profiteering is not sound business. He knows that many businesses will operate responsibly, but there are always a few actors who refuse to employ best practices. Voluntary compliance would work if everyone was responsible. They aren't. Therefore, business needs sensible, fair regulations. There is a difference between choosing "winners and losers" and applying sound guidelines and fair enforcement. He sees what Joe Barton and others who grant large tax subsidies to the fossil fuel industry and impose regulations on the solar and wind power industries which inhibit their development as interference in the free market system. He definitely differs with Joe Barton on the role of government.

Joe wants to abolish OSHA and the EPA. David sees their role as necessary. Workers should not be subject to preventable harm. Those who exploit "the natural resources" should not be allowed to exploit the people who live and work and study nearby. Those who profit from developing natural resources should not be allowed to pocket the profits and pass the cost along to adjacent property owners and the public by higher health costs and lower property values. Protectionism of the fossil fuel industry inhibits development and implementation of sounder business practices.

David is frequently seen at EPA and TCEQ hearing on Air and Water Quality. Much of his team are active in Transportation, Energy, Health Care, Civil Rights, Women's Rights activism.  He attracts and keeps volunteers who have college degrees and campaign experience. There  are no attempts to construct a persona from polling data. Instead, his campaign is based on authenticity. He is consistent. He campaigns on issues which he believes in. He is popular with labor. He was endorsed by the State AFLCIO in 2014 and was one of only three Texas Democratic Congressional non-incumbents to receive the endorsement of the National American Federal Governmental Workers. 

When Joe Barton, during the governmental shut-down of 2013, said that American could pay the Chinese interest on the loans and other lenders could wait, David was livid. He knew that the largest holder of American debt is the Social Security Trust Fund, not the Chinese. Reagan was the first to borrow from the SS Trust Fund. George W. Bush borrowed heavily from it to help finance his Middle Eastern war. Cozad sees it as part of our nation's honor to respect the American workers who have contributed throughout their working careers to the Social Security Trust Fund.   

David examines policy from every direction before making a decision. When examining the XL Pipeline, he discovered that the corrosive nature of the oil and the lack of adequate processes to prevent spills or to clean-up from pipeline ruptures would endanger the land and people along the pipeline's path. The oil is not intended to be used domestically in the USA. The risk outweighed the benefit. Logic showed that the jobs generated by pipeline construction would not exceed those which could be generated in other infrastructure projects. Reason dictates that sound American policy should be focused on creating jobs through investing in projects which do not endanger the lives, long-term health and safety of the American people and the land we depend upon for our domestic economic survival. It is not a popular position with some people. However, David knows that being responsible does not always make you popular with those who hope to profit.

 A Win By Cozad in 2016  would turn all of Arlington,Navarro and Ellis Counties  Blue

Cozad  is running in the US-TX 6th Congressional District. It comprises all  of Arlington which is not in Congressman Marc Veasey's TX 33rd District. Veasey represents a small sliver of Arlington,  When the 33rd was created, Republicans in the Legislature oversaw a process which surgically cut Democrats out of a few Arlington precincts. Some speculate that it was a process designed to make the 6th a safer district for Republicans. Veasey was a former staffer of Congressman Martin Frost, who represented part of Arlington for years. When Frost became a "probable contender" for Speaker of the House, the GOP dominated State Legislature acted to weaken Frost's re-election prospects through gerrymandering. Frost had to choose between districts with constituents in Dallas or abandoning much of his Tarrant County base. He chose the part of the district farther east and his Democratic seat when to the Republicans. Marc Veasey was elected to the Texas Legislature from Fort Worth, frequenting working closely with Wendy Davis who represented at Tarrant County Senatorial District which included Fort Worth and the western half of Arlington. 

When asked why he is running, he tells folks honestly that "It has always been about my grandchildren." He believes he can do more to improve the world for them and for their generation as a member of Congress than as a private citizen. Seeing missed opportunities to make things better frustrates him. Grandstanding and unnecessary waste while those initiatives and projects which should be national priorities go unfunded is a betrayal of the faith and trust of the American people. Knowing that too little is being done to return opportunities for upward mobility to the American middle class spurs him forward. He sacrifices time with his grandchildren, but ultimately, they are what motivates him to not stop, to continue building, to continue communicating, to continue working, to continue mentoring and training others. to continue campaigning.
It's about much than just winning an election. It is about "keeping my family and your family safe." David doesn't recommend fear. He advocates using logic and doing what we can to prevent accidents. Racial profiling and other discriminatory practices do not make us safer. Opportunity to thrive, being treated fairly and treating others fairly, communication and mutual cooperation moves us forward. Refusing to grant one segment of the society an unfair advantage over the rest of society is important. Small government won't do it. Fair government will. Starving government too far, as is advocated by many of the far right, will reduce this nation to the lawless state of wastelands like some of most brutal countries. American should not go backward. We need to come together and build on what we have, improve what needs improving, and rethink what doesn't work. We do that through a legislative, debate and voting process, not by obstruction and anarchy.

David Cozad is a man who does his homework. He researches policy and goes beyond the surface to evaluate the ramifications of policy proposals. He surrounds himself with others who are examine policy and track who supports what and why. He is not a person who gives in to "knee jerk" reactions. He is steady and thoughtful. In the military he was in charge of one of the key parts to our nation's nuclear arsenal. If the President had ordered a defensive strike against the Soviet Union during the Cold War, Cozad or someone parallel to him, would have been ordered to assemble the artillery. He approaches everything with that same careful deliberation. Fortunately, the Soviet Union never launched a nuclear attack on the USA while Cozad was on-watch. As a boy he grew up on military bases in a divided Germany. The U.S. Army family quarters where the Cozad family lived had been constructed by Hitler's forces and occupied by the SS. Cozad grew up knowing that freedom is precious, being careful is wise but paranoia is not.
more than just his campaign. He says it is about "keeping our families safe, mine and yours and those we don't know." It isn't about building walls and operating in fear. It is about being smart. Using common sense. Doing what we can to prevent accidents. Improving our processes. Being fair and respectful.
campaign. It's about bringing people together to stand up to the threats from within our country which harm people and limit opportunities for people to use and develop their talents and "thrive." Affordable education and access to quality, affordable health care are not unattainable goals. They must be on the national agenda. We need legislative action, not just sound bites and campaign rhetoric.

Unlike many of his peers who grew up in the USA, he grew up in an integrated society. Being supportive of Civil Rights and Human Rights is natural to him. He did not encounter racial segregation until the family was transferred to El Paso when he was a teenager. He sees working for every American of all races, genders and sexual orientations to be treated fairly and respectfully as our responsibility as citizens of this nation. When we fall short, that means we must try harder to be fair, to change for the better, to enable others to have every opportunity that we expect and demand for ourselves and our families.
He looks at policy ramifications. Obviously as an artillery officer in the military, he is not anti-gun. As a former school teacher and a parent and grandparent, he does not think that the classroom is the proper place for guns. Some argue that arming teachers will protect the children. Cozad has been a teacher. He knows how much attention is required to teach a class. Not every person has the temperament to be armed. Some are not attentive enough to secure the weapon under all circumstance. He stands firmly in opposition to guns on campus. When people are armed, Cozad's messages and tee shirts carry a "no guns in school" message.
authorities must get close to them before they can determine if the gun is in the hands of someone who is authorized to carry and will not do harm. If all guns are banned, authorities can easily determine that anyone with a weapon is up to no good.  Some of
The State Senator in a large part of
David's Congressional District drafted the legislation requiring State Colleges and Junior Colleges to permit guns on campus.
He watched his dad and his friends parents serve our country in the military.
He served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corp.
He led developmental/implementation teams which revolutionized the telecommunications industry as a civilian.
He got a teaching certificate and taught High School Math and Science after leaving the telecommunications industry.
He founded a non-profit organization to study how American can keep mobile without harming the environment or the health of people.
He ran for Congress and got the highest percentage of votes in 2014 of any non-incumbent Democrat in Texas with a budget of only $14K.
He continues to mentor, train, problem-solve, target limited resources where they will do them most good.
He helped rebuild inactive rural Democratic County Party organizations.
He enabled Hillary Clinton to have a strong presence at the 2014 State of Texas Democratic Convention.
He is a husband, father and grandfather.
He encourages and assists other candidates up and down the ticket and encourages his staff to do likewise.

David Cozad is a builder. He is an educator. He is a mentor. He is a problem-solver. He is persistent. He doesn't quit because he always sees the people he loves and knows that the man who occupies the Congressional Seat in the US TX 6th District does not rank  their welfare and future as important as the bottom-line of the cement industry, the coal-fired power plants, or other industrial polluters. He knows that there is a better way to keep the lights burning in the homes and businesses of America. He's found solutions which others said were impossible. Doing what was previously thought was impossible is not easy, but when the American people have the vision and they believe they can make a difference, this is a nation which is noted for moving the world to better places by accomplishing what previously seen as impossible.

Not Easy, but not Impossible

Unlike the 33rd Congressional District which is a Democratic opportunity district drawn in a bar bell shape with "pitts" predominately African American neighborhoods in Fort Worth with Dallas residents of "Little Mexico". The 33rd cuts a narrow path through Arlington and Grand Prairie  Taking minorities out of the 6th was intended to make it safely Republican. However, the demographics of Arlington and Ellis and Navarro Counties has changed. The district is solidly purple now. Arlington does not have a "right or wrong" side of the Railroad track. There are some neighborhoods with higher percentages of minorities but most are diverse and integrated. In 2014 Joe Barton lost a large segment of Arlington and all of Meadowbrook and Hanley (East Fort Worth) in the General Election to David Cozad. Barton outspent Cozad by nearly a half a million dollars. On average, Democratic non-incumbents running for Congress in Texas in 2014 had less than a penny and a half per voting age resident of the district to spend. If every Texan who voted for Barak Obama for President in 2012 would give at least $10 a year to non-incumbent Democrats running against GOP Tea Party Congressional incumbents in 2016, challengers would have 20 times more resources to reach the voters with their progressive messages.

Republicans in Austin drew the 33rd Congressional District to be a safe Republican district, but their dislike for Barton was evident in the map. They purposely removed the Arlington Entertainment District from the 6th and put it into the 33rd. Joe was very upset to lose the Cowboy and Ranger Stadiums. There was little economic development he could claim he encouraged. He was not responsible for the Stadium development, but he liked to point to it with pride. Both stadiums are now in Congressman Marc Veasey's District.

The University of Texas at Arlington is in the US -TX 6th District. After earning undergraduate degrees in Math and Physics and Computer Science, David earn a teaching certificate at UNT and returned to graduate school in Computer Science at UTA. His wife earned an architecture degree there. Several of his children graduated from there. He hopes to represent the District where the University is located. He will be a friend to the University. The boy who grew up on military bases in Austria and Germany and the United States was influenced by his father who appreciated knowledge. Books were always the Cozad children's friend. He knows how far an idea must travel for it to become a product or a revenue stream. He knows that revenue streams are essential for job development. He wants to see jobs where this generation and the next can use their minds and creativity and skill and be richly rewarded for their labors. That requires sound labor policies and resources for businesses to compete fairly in the world market place.

Barton is not very popular 
In 2014 Cozad ran unopposed in the Democratic Primary and did not spend anything in Ellis County. When Cozad's Democratic Primary votes are added to Barton's Libertarian /GOP primary opponent, Barton had more people vote against him in all except 5 precincts of his home county than voted for him. Without campaigning actively in Ellis in the Primary, Cozad received more votes than the two Republicans did in their primary in 4 precincts.

Barton is no longer Chair of any committee. No other member of Congress missed more votes than Joe Barton during this past session of Congress. He has not brought any new industries or enterprises to the District. He has not gotten any legislation passed.

Barton is pulling two very far right-wing opponents in the Republican Primary. There is an opening for a strong, determined Democratic opponent. Cozad's is building on what he accomplished in 2014.  His 2014 Push Card sums up many of his positions.

To volunteer or to contribute to his campaign go to

To contribute to Cozad's Campaign and the Campaign of Shirley McKellar
and the Federal PAC which supports progressive non-incumbents running against GOP Tea Party Incumbents for Congress in Districts on the Ballot in Texas with one click:

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