A Republican candidate for a county commissioner’s seat created a trust intended to dissuade his children from marrying someone who isn’t white.
Vickers “Vic” Cunningham is a former criminal district judge who is currently in a runoff for the Republican Party nomination for the last GOP-held county commissioner seat in Dallas.
Allegations of racial bigotry were recently leveled at Cunningham by his estranged brother, Bill Cunningham, who said his sibling had been a racist all his life. According to Bill Cunningham, Vic Cunningham showed up at his home and threatened him and his husband. During this episode, Vic Cunningham also allegedly referred to his brother’s husband as “your boy,” on numerous occasions.
On Friday, Vic Cunningham told the Dallas Morning News that he denies harboring any form of racial bigotry or that he threatened his brother’s family. Cunningham did admit, however, that his trust does indeed reward his children for marrying other white people. The trust also rewards Cunningham’s children for marrying someone of the opposite sex who is Christian. The GOP candidate said:
I strongly support traditional family values. If you marry a person of the opposite sex that’s Caucasian, that’s Christian, they will get a distribution.
Cunningham clarified that his views on interracial marriage had evolved a bit since the trust was created in 2010. He noted that, while he couldn’t just change the terms of the trust, he has accepted that his son is in a relationship with a Vietnamese woman.
While the racialized controversy has rocked the GOP runoff–even prompting the Dallas Morning News to withdraw their endorsement of Cunningham–two of Vic and Bill Cunningham’s other brothers insist that Bill Cunningham is just trying to harm Vic Cunningham’s political ambitions after being denied a $45,000 loan. Ross Cunningham said, “I’m embarrassed that my brother fabricated stories that drag my family’s name through the mud.”
But that’s not quite the end of it. The candidate Cunningham’s alleged racial bigotry has also been noted by a former aide–and even his own mother. In a recorded conversation obtained by The News, a woman who appears to be Mina Cunningham said her son had been a bigot for quite some time. After that conversation was turned over, however, Mina Cunningham released a statement contradicting its contents.
Amanda Tackett worked on Vic Cunningham’s 2006 campaign for district attorney. She described various instances of her former boss using the N-word to describe black people when they couldn’t hear him. She said, he referred to criminal cases involving black people as “T.N.D.s, Typical [N-Word] Deals.”
Tackett continued, “I’ve never met another Caucasian person like this, Vic Cunningham is like a character out of a movie.”
[image via screengrab/Dallas Morning News]