The El Paso County Democratic Party has voted to remove Alvin Sexton, a Widefield District 3 Board of Education candidate, from his position as a precinct organizer by a “supermajority vote,” according to a statement released this morning. Sexton’s removal was a result of his responses to the Transform Colorado voter guide.
According to the statement from the El Paso County Democratic Party, “On the matter of transgender rights, Mr. Sexton responded that he agrees that teachers have the right to refer to a student according to the pronoun corresponding to the student’s biological sex at birth. Concerning the teaching of systemic racism in the United States, Mr. Sexton stated that he agrees that the United States is not systemically and fundamentally racist, and that students should not be taught that people are automatically privileged or oppressed based on their race or skin color.”
Transform Colorado voter guides, paid for by the right-wing Truth and Liberty Coalition, only asked candidates five questions, about “transgenderism,” “boys in girls’s sports,” “sex education,” “parental rights,” and “social studies/history.” The Transform Colorado voter guide did not provide responses from the candidates, but simply “agree,” “disagree,” “no response,” or “refused to answer.”
The El Paso County Democratic Party claimed that “his statements render him ineffective in his roles and responsibilities as a representative of the party.”
While El Paso County’s Republican elected officials and operatives have been busy hosting school board candidate forums and making endorsements, the Democrats have stayed on the sidelines of the ostensibly nonpartisan school board races.
Sexton responded in a statement on Facebook. “The El Paso County Democratic Party has wrongly accused me of something, and I need to confront it,” he wrote. “They bowed to three people who had no idea what the queries were about. In order for my district to reach the independents and Republicans who might support a Democrat, I completed two church voter guides. … The party leadership has not examined my district because, if they had, they would have discovered that over 5,000 Democrats alone attend churches here, making nonparticipation inequitable.”
Sexton also responded to a survey from Church Voter Guides. When asked, “Explain your positions regarding teaching and discussing gender issues in the classroom, including the use of ‘preferred pronouns?’” Sexton responded:
“Studies have shown that using a student’s preferred pronoun leads to a significant drop in the chance of suicide or bodily harm. I do not claim to understand all the nuances of gender identity, but I do understand that these are people, and they deserve to be treated with love and respect. I would like more clarity on what this survey means by ‘gender issues.’ If you can clarify, I would be happy to continue answering.”
The El Paso County Democratic Party has been working with 501(c)4 nonprofit the Welcome Party to engage moderate and conservative-leaning voters, according to a recent interview with co-founder Lauren Harper.
“We’re saying you don’t have to be 100% on this purity test to be a Democrat because that is what is excluding far too many Americans from wanting to vote for Democrats these days,” said Harper.
Sexton, who ran unsuccessfully against Rep. Scott Bottoms (R-CO Springs) in 2022, denied the claims in the El Paso County Democratic Party’s statement. “Anyone who knows me will refute everything that this party has said about me,” he wrote. “No, it is not a fact. It is nonsense. I have been involved with this community for over 20 years; I have supported them in every way possible, and I have made videos refuting Christian nationalism.”
The El Paso County Republican Party has been very active in censuring members who don’t show sufficient support for the current party leadership, but this is a first for the El Paso County Democratic Party. El Paso County Democrats have been silent when Rep. Marc Snyder (D-Manitou Springs) helped Republicans kill the assault weapons ban earlier this year, when Gov. Jared Polis shut down efforts for public sector collective bargaining and gutted air quality provisions in oil and gas legislation, and during former Senator Pete Lee’s long-running residency scandal.
“The El Paso County Democratic Party read the questions for what they wanted them to say rather than what they actually stated, failing to read the voter guide from the other church,” wrote Sexton.
Read Sexton’s full response, which he posted to his Facebook page, below:
The El Paso County Democratic Party has wrongly accused me of something, and I need to confront it. They bowed to three people who had no idea what the queries were about. In order for my district to reach the independents and Republicans who might support a Democrat, I completed two church voter guides. The El Paso County Democratic Party read the questions for what they wanted them to say rather than what they actually stated, failing to read the voter guide from the other church. The party leadership has not examined my district because, if they had, they would have discovered that over 5,000 Democrats alone attend churches here, making nonparticipation inequitable.
I am able to go into more detail in the second voter guide, which I will attach at the conclusion of this, and further demonstrate the incompetence of the local party’s research.
First, a question about freedom of speech under the constitution
“Do Teachers have the right to refer to a student according to their pronoun corresponding to the student’s biological sex at birth?”
Observe how this pertains to teachers’ rights. It is not inquiring as to whether or not I agree with the usage of pronouns, which you are all aware that I do. It is a rights-related question.
For the protection of students, Colorado has anti-discrimination statutes. As an example, consider the legal case of Meriwether v. Hartop (2021), in which a professor at a public university was compelled to address a student using their preferred pronouns and sued on the basis of free speech and the right to exercise one’s religion. The Professor prevailed. I don’t think force will be used to change people’s hearts. People must be made aware of the advantages of using pronouns, as I stated in the church voter guides.
One must comprehend the conservative meaning of systemic racism in order to answer the second question. They do not see it as a set of laws that led to generations of decades of repression of minorities, resulting in injustices for millions of people. They define it as “Does one believe there is active legislation that specifically targets certain races in favor of white people after the civil rights era?” In actuality, no single piece of legislation expressly targets any particular race. Yes, there are laws that cause injustices for certain individuals, but none that target groups in particular. That would be against the law.
The second query is: Do you think we should teach kids that they are persecuted because of the color of their skin? For me, no. I won’t teach my mixed-race son that he is persecuted and has a disadvantage in life. That is not true. Are there individuals who have particular advantages in life? Yes, but once more, you must comprehend the perspectives of Republicans. The question “are certain people more privileged?” refers to economic privilege rather than cultural privilege.
Anyone who knows me will refute everything that this party has said about me. No, it is not a fact. It is nonsense. I have been involved with this community for over 20 years; I have supported them in every way possible, and I have made videos refuting Christian nationalism.