August 22, 2013

ARLINGTON — Arlington school board member Tony Pompa announced Wednesday his intention to run in the Republican primary next year for the Senate seat held by Democratic state Sen. Wendy Davis of Fort Worth.

Pompa, 42, who has served as a school board trustee for two years, filed paperwork with the Texas Ethics Commission in Austin late Tuesday and announced his bid Wednesday morning.

Candidates can’t file until November for the March 2014 GOP primary, but former state Rep. Mark Shelton of Fort Worth, Konni Burton of the Northeast Tarrant Tea Party and Mark Skinner of Colleville also have said they plan to seek the Republican nomination.

Davis has said she plans to run for re-election to the Senate, but she also is considering a gubernatorial bid. Davis became a Democratic powerhouse following her 11-hour filibuster fight over abortion rights during the last legislative session.

Pompa said he decided to run while serving on the school board’s Legislative Action Committee. He said the committee was unable to get any traction from Davis, and he began to realize that Davis doesn’t represent the values of the district.

Senate District 10 includes Fort Worth, Arlington, Mansfield, Colleyville and other areas of south and Northeast Tarrant County.

“I firmly believe Senate District 10 is a conservative, Republican district. I am a conservative Republican,” Pompa said. “We value limited government and taxes — personal responsibility. Those are the things I don’t think Sen. Davis represents.”

Pompa said he started meeting with community leaders in April 2013 to see if they were interested in running against Davis and bringing conservative representation back

“No one was really interested in taking her on,” Pompa said. “Maybe it’s the fact that I’m not a politician and I don’t know what I don’t know. I thought, I’ll do it. The same mentality got me to launch my business 20 years ago.”

Pompa, who was brought to this country from Mexico by his parents when he was 11, is the founder and CEO of General Assembly, a nationwide merchandising organization located in Arlington.

Pompa’s term on the school board ends in May 2014.

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