Candace Owens tried to warn Abbott, Morath, Middleton, "J6 Julie," and all the Florida folks, too, about James Dunn
Candace Owens, of all people, publicly accused Dunn and "Black Republicans of Brazoria County" of fraud way back in February 2022. Texas Sen. Mayes Middleton, R-Vouchers, gave 15K anyway.
Update: On Friday, March 10, Polk County, Florida prosecutors filed charges against James Dunn related to his work as campaign consultant for Republican School Board candidates here. “Black Republicans of Brazoria County,” the company Owens accused of fraud, was the company the Polk candidates actually paid for Dunn’s “services,” according to the investigative report.
See this article from the Lakeland Ledger about Dunn’s charges.
Oh dear … note the date on the Facebook post below — February 23, 2022. That’s three months before I ever heard of twice convicted felon, lifelong scammer, and well-connected Texas GOP operative James Dunn. I am not in the habit of following the Facebook statements of Candace Owens; so I never saw it until someone from Texas sent it to me this week.
Owens posted this just weeks after Sen. David “Mayes” Middleton, R-Galveston, who is leading Texas’ legislative voucher effort, contributed $15,750 to James Dunn’s “Black Republicans of Brazoria County (BRBC)” for “event expense.”
Did Middleton fund the event that Candace Owens is calling “a complete scam,” worthy of “filing a police report?” I don’t know. Middleton’s office has never addressed my inquiries about his relationship to Dunn and BRBC.
Perhaps Texas media and opposition politicians and education advocates should get on that. I live in Florida.
The friends of James Dunn: a who’s who of top Texas politicos and education officials
Before we get to the wild timeline on this, let’s briefly recap the Texas luminaries now hopelessly entangled in both James Dunn, noted felon and GOP campaign operative, and/or his group “Black Republicans of Brazoria County,” winner of $62,500 PPP loan on roughly $15K of total revenue.
Texas State Senator Mayes Middleton, R-Vouchers: Middleton is also leading the legislative charge for vouchers in Texas. See article from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on Dec. 26. And this from Texas TV a few days ago. Middleton is the only publicly known source of revenue ($15,750) for Black Republicans of Brazoria County that is not a PPP loan.
Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath: On October 14-15, 2022, six months after Candace Owens’ warning, despite months of Florida-based notoriety, the convicted felon Dunn hosted a state-approved training for Texas school district officials in Southlake. Mike Morath gave the keynote address.
Newly elected Texas Board of Education Member “J6 Julie” Pickren: Pickren acted as a speaker and/or facilitator for Dunn’s training. See above. Pickren also took part in the January 6th “Stop the Steal” rally. Middleton was one of her top donors for her BoE race.
Houston ISD Trustee Kendall Baker: Dunn’s campaign client and Houston Independent School District (ISD) trustee was elected in December 2021. Baker was let go from his job with the City of Houston in 2014 after allegations that he lewdly solicited sex from a co-worker were found true by city investigators. Mayes Middleton is also among the largest political donors for Kendall Baker.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott: Of all the roughly 7000 district trustees in Texas, Abbott appointed James Dunn-client Kendall Baker on December 13, 2022 to join Morath on a multi-state education organization called Southern Regional Education Board (SREB.) Baker and Morath were the only two names announced. They’re a package; but their only obvious connection, beyond Abbott, is James Dunn. Abbott made this Dunn client appointment almost a year after Candace Owens publicly denounced Dunn as a fraud.
Here’s much more detail on all of that.
Candace Owens, James Dunn, and “Black Republicans of Brazoria” — a timeline
Black Republicans of Brazoria County (BRBC) was the last of at least six James Dunn sole proprietorship and/or affiliated organizations that collected emergency COVID PPP loans totaling about $310,000 in free government money. See here and here. On April 30, 2021, BRBC, which was described as an “elementary and secondary schools” company, got a $62,500 PPP loan to cover six supposed jobs. I can find no public record of BRBC ever having any revenue before this point.
So let’s a build a larger timeline around Dunn, BRBC, Dunn’s powerful Texas allies, and Candace Owens’ public fraud allegations:
April 2019: The Community Temple Church of God In Christ in Houston signs a contract with James Dunn to “facilitate” a $5 million grant for “construction or non-construction services.” The church paid Dunn $13,000 while never receiving any services.
May 27, 2020: Black Republicans of Brazoria County is incorporated. James Dunn is the “agent” and appears to be only person named as corporate official. BRBC will receive a $62,500 PPP loan a year later.
April 30, 2021: BRBC, described as an “elementary and secondary schools” company, gets a $62,500 PPP loan to cover 6 supposed jobs. There is no public record I can find of BRBC ever having any revenue before this point.
August 17, 2021: After Houston prosecutors ignore their complaints, the Community Temple Church of God In Christ takes Dunn to civil court and wins a judgement for $21,293. By this date, companies connected to Dunn had received $310,000 in federal PPP money.
Dec. 11, 2021: Kendall Baker wins his election, with Dunn as treasurer.
Dec. 15, 2021: Rep. David “Mayes" Middleton donates $5,000 to January 6th attendee Julie Pickren for her Texas Board of Education campaign.
Dec. 31, 2021: Baker’s campaign, of which Dunn is treasurer, pays Dunn’s “2D Development LLC” $2,000 for “consultant reimbursement.”
Jan. 2, 2022: As Dunn defies the court order to pay back the Community Temple Church of God In Christ, “Mayes" Middleton donates $15,000 to “Black Republicans of Brazoria County” for “event expense.” This is the first known revenue contributed to BRBC that isn’t a PPP loan,
Jan. 20, 2022: Mayes Middleton, fresh off his “Black Republicans” contribution, becomes Kendall Baker’s biggest campaign donor for 2022 with a $2,000 contribution.
Jan 28, 2022: Mayes Middleton makes another “Black Republicans of Brazoria County” contribution for $750. Middleton’s $15,750 donations appear to be the only contributions to BRBC that is not a PPP loan.
Feb. 19, 2022: James Dunn attends the Brazoria County Republican Party’s “Lincoln Reagan Day” dinner. It’s $75 per person, $100 for VIP. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is the keynote speaker and poses with Dunn for a picture.
Feb. 23, 2022: Candace Owens publicly accuses Dunn of fraud and calls BRBC a “fake group.” See full accusation again.
Feb. 25, 2022: The Texas Appeals Court issues a “mandate” that “commands” Dunn to obey their order to pay Community Temple. He continues to ignore the court.
June 7, 2022: Dunn posts this picture with Gov. Abbott on Instagram just as he was entering Polk County to unintentionally destroy the campaigns of his gross Polk County clients.
Note Dunn’s reference to “Black Republicans of Brazoria County.” Was this a BRBC event? I don’t know.
July 2022: Bishop Kurt Thompson of Community Temple tells me. “[Dunn] hasn’t paid us a dime,” adding that other churches have been victimized, too.
Dec. 23, 2022: I send Kendall Baker an email, asking: “Hi there. Were you aware, when James Dunn was running your School Board campaign, that he was actively cheating a Houston church called the "Community Temple Church of God In Christ"? A court ordered him to compensate the church in August 2021. Did you know that?”
As is the case with Middleton, I have never received a response from Baker.
If I lived in Texas, I’d be trying to get a lot of people on the record about this. Unfortunately, we’ve got plenty to occupy us here in Florida.
Recapping Dunn’s Florida angle
By comparison to that Texas-sized insanity, Florida’s part of the Dunn scandal is much smaller and more focused on Polk County/Tampa Bay area. You can read about some if its players here.
A lot of people connected to Gov. Ron DeSantis are connected to James Dunn; but I can’t directly connect DeSantis to Dunn at this point — although DeSantis-endorsed Polk School Board member Rick Nolte comes real close and we need more investigation to know for sure.