In 2010, Vickers Cunningham, a candidate running for county commission in Dallas, created a trust for his children, which they would gain access to if they followed his very specific instructions regarding who they could marry — white, straight, Christian people, to be exact.
Last Friday, in an interview with The Dallas Morning News, Cunningham admitted that he created a living trust with these specific rules. Although it was only eight years ago, the politician insists that his views have “evolved” since then.
“I strongly support traditional family values,” Cunningham said of his reasoning behind the trust. “If you marry a person of the opposite sex that’s Caucasian, that’s Christian, they will get a distribution.”
He has changed his stance since then, but stated on his website that he cannot change the rules of the trust, so if his kids follow the original rules they will be able to access it.
Cunningham garnered national attention after his estranged brother, Bill, accused him of being a racist. Cunningham said the revelations reported by the Dallas Morning News have caused him and his family “much pain.”
“I have spent a lifetime in service to my community and church, building a reputation of integrity, and these events truly hurt my heart. I take full responsibility for the terms of the trust my children would have to meet upon marriage to receive an advance from their trust,” he wrote on his campaign website, which appears to have been deleted.
“This trust was set-up during a time of concerned feelings about my brother Bill’s gay lifestyle. My views on interracial marriage have evolved since I set up the irrevocable trust in 2010, and today I would absolutely remove those conditions if I legally could,” he added.
The candidate denied allegations that he is racist, saying he “never has and never will discriminate against someone because of their race, religion, color, creed, or sexual orientation.”
His brother, Bill Cunningham, has maintained his stance that his brother has not only not changed his mind on the trust rules, but that he is still an active racist.
“His views and his actions are disqualifying for anyone to hold public office in 2018,” said Bill Cunningham. “It frightens me to death to think of people in power who could hurt people.”
What’s more, despite Vic Cunningham’s clarification, DMN’s editorial board said that it is withdrawing its previous recommendation in support of his candidacy.
“While Cunningham denies using the N-word, the reporting by The News’ Naomi Martin leaves us unwilling to recommend him to potentially lead and serve Dallas County,” the newspaper explained.
(H/T: The Christian Post)