PAC spending big to knock out Dallas councilman Philip Kingston

A political action committee funded by establishment figures in Dallas is looking to knock out an outspoken Dallas councilman in Saturday’s municipal election.

Nearly $200,000 has been spent on the contentious District 14 Dallas City Council race between Philip Kingston and Matt Wood. The PAC, For Our Community, has been pouring big bucks into several Dallas City Council races – but mostly in District 14.

For years, Kingston has been a thorn in the side of people who have run the city and Mayor Mike Rawlings. He has been an outspoken critic of the Trinity tollroad and recently forced an opening bidding process to revitalize Fair Park despite the wishes of Rawlings.

The person running the PAC happens to be the same person who ran Rawlings’ campaign. The PAC has been blanketing Kingston's district with flyers and produced an online ad that says Kingston is too rude to tolerate.

Kingston says he knows exactly who's behind the attack ads.

"Who is really behind the PAC? Of course it's the mayor, it's the mayor and his check writing friends,” Kingston said.

The mayor's former campaign manager, Mari Woodlief, who runs the PAC, did not respond to FOX4 about whether the mayor has any involvement with the PAC.

Rawlings’ spokesperson said in a statement the mayor does not endorse candidates running against incumbents. But the mayor's son has actively put out tweets in favor of Kingston's opponent Matt Wood.

Wood said the attack ads have been both good and bad for him.

“So that's been a mixed blessing. I've spent a lot of time having to make people aware we have nothing to do with that,” Wood said. “Some of what has been said is accurate. I don't disagree with the early message that he's said things that shouldn't be said. “

The race is so heated a Kingston supporter recently filed a complaint with the Texas Ethics Commission accusing Wood of illegally coordinating with the PAC. It’s a claim Wood's campaign manager strongly denies.

“The ethics complaint is completely fabricated,” said campaign manager Mark Melton.

The Wood campaign said late Thursday they were told the complaint had been dismissed.

Polls are open on Saturday from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.

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