Former City of Mansfield Mayor David Cook is asking House District 96 voters to send him to Austin as their State Representative. However, Cook and his allies at City Hall are working hard to withhold basic public information related to Cook’s official actions while Mayor.
It’s reasonable then for voters to ask, “What is David Cook hiding?”
Evasive Reaction to Simple Open Records Request
The Lone Star Project has filed dozens, if not hundreds, of routine open records requests like the one sent to the City of Mansfield in February asking for documents pertaining to current Mansfield Mayor David Cook’s official actions and his use of public funds and city resources.
The request – which can be seen here – is typical and straight-forward. It asks for reimbursements, office budgets, staff lists, gifts and other publicly disclosable records. It is similar, if not identical, to many others sent to various cities and public offices over the years.
The reaction to our request, however, was not typical at all.
First, the City of Mansfield responded with a note – which can be seen here – indicating that the material was being gathered and would be provided.
Just a day later, however, the spirit of compliance was replaced with obstruction when the City and David Cook decided to try and hide behind a potential Attorney General’s ruling.
Intimate? Embarrassing? Highly Objectionable?
Most revealing, in its letter to AG Ken Paxton – which can be seen here – the City cites a specific section of state law that states information considered “highly intimate or embarrassing, such that its release would be highly objectionable to a person of ordinary sensibilities” could be withheld from public release.
Republican David Cook would rather hide information than come clean with voters
Tarrant County-based House District 96 is being hotly contested.
Long-time Fort Worth Star-Telegram columnist Bud Kennedy characterized the race by saying “Former Mansfield Mayor David Cook will be swimming against a purple tide…”
No one is trying to “embarrass” David Cook. At the same time, Cook is not new to politics. He served as Mayor of the City of Mansfield for more than a decade before he declared allegiance to Trump Party Republicans and pushed long-time Representative Bill Zedler aside to run in District 96. It was a professional politician’s move.
David Cook knows that he has a responsibility to disclose how he has used – or abused – taxpayer resources.