Former State Board of Education member George Clayton plans to advocate for marriage equality if elected to represent North Texas’ House District 102, he announced Thursday.
Clayton, who announced earlier this year he’d be running as a Democrat instead of a Republican, was outed in a whisper campaign before losing his re-election bid to the State Board of Education last year.
While Clayton previously told Dallas Voice he didn’t want to be considered the “gay candidate,” his platform released Thursday lists gay marriage among his goals.
“I will introduce legislation that would prohibit all laws and ordinances, local or otherwise, that ban gay marriage,” Clayton said in a statement. “It is time for Texas and Texans to move forward and depart from the fears and prejudices of the past and present. If this action cannot be done legislatively, then it will have to be accomplished in the courts. It is inevitable and those who oppose it might just as well prepare for it.”
State Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth, authored a marriage equality bill earlier this year. The bill would require two-thirds majority in each chamber in order to place the state’s constitutional marriage amendment back on the ballot for Texas voters to overturn.
Statewide advocacy group Equality Texas is launching a marriage project entitled Why Marriage Matters – Texas, which will focus on the importance of couples’ stories and how not having the freedom to marry has impacted them in the Lone Star State.
Clayton is the only Democrat in the HD 102 race. On the Republican side, state Rep. Stefani Carter, who was once considering a run for Railroad Commission, is facing three challengers, including former Dallas Councilwoman Linda Koop. The district includes parts of North Dallas, Addison and Richardson.
Also listed among Clayton’s priorities would be the creation of a Texas Commission on Instruction and Curriculum and changes to the State Board of Education, including appointments by the governor, financial expertise and supervision on school funds and management.