Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson Leaves Democratic Party, Becomes A Republican

(Photo by Carolyn Kaster / POOL / AFP) (Photo by CAROLYN KASTER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson announced in a Friday op-ed he is departing the Democratic Party to become a Republican.

Johnson said he has valued lowering taxes, opposing defunding the police, creating a “friendlier business climate” and prioritizing public safety during his four years as mayor, according to his Wall Street Journal (WSJ) op-ed. This approach has made Dallas one of the safest cities in the U.S. by bringing down the violent crime rate in all categories and maintaining its status as a “pro-business city,” the mayor wrote.

“After these wins for the people of Dallas—and after securing 98.7% of the vote in my re-election campaign this year—I have no intention of changing my approach to my job,” Johnson continued. “But today I am changing my party affiliation. Next spring, I will be voting in the Republican primary. When my career in elected office ends in 2027 on the inauguration of my successor as mayor, I will leave office as a Republican.”

The mayor said his push to improve policing, water infrastructure and public education by working with Republicans in the state legislature did not make him a favorite among the Democratic caucus. He argued American cities need Republican values of practicing law and order and fiscal conservatism to achieve these goals. (RELATED: ‘They Will Try To Bully You’: NC Rep Details Why She Left Democratic Party)

“I have always tried to be honest and say what I think is right for my city,” he wrote. “The future of America’s great urban centers depends on the willingness of the nation’s mayors to champion law and order and practice fiscal conservatism. Our cities desperately need the genuine commitment to these principles (as opposed to the inconsistent, poll-driven commitment of many Democrats) that has long been a defining characteristic of the GOP.”

“In other words, American cities need Republicans—and Republicans need American cities,” Johnson continued. “When my political hero Theodore Roosevelt was born, only 20% of Americans lived in urban areas. By the time he was elected president, that share had doubled to 40%. Today, it stands at 80%. As America’s cities go, so goes America.”

He criticized leaders in major cities for allegedly exacerbating homelessness and hurting local business by allowing crime to run rampant. He blamed this phenomenon on Democrats’ “virtue signaling” by proposing government programs that attempt to “solve every single societal ill” and to attack Republicans.

“This makes for good headlines, but not for safer, stronger, more vibrant cities,” he said.

Johnson vowed to focus on “policies and principles” during his time as mayor, rather than creating a city hall that’s only a “‘progressive’ echo chamber.”

“Still, with my change in party affiliation, I recognize that the number of Republican mayors leading the nation’s 10 largest cities has increased from zero to one. This is hardly a red wave. But it is clear that the nation and its cities have reached a time for choosing. And the overwhelming majority of Americans who call our cities home deserve to have real choices—not “progressive” echo chambers—at city hall,” the op-ed concluded.