New allegations against Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton have surfaced this week including one where he referred to Railroad Commission Chair Christi Craddick as a “half Arab ass” and other derogatory names.
Documents obtained from sources who are both current and former employees of the state tell of how Sitton himself used harsh language and racial slurs about Chairperson Christi Craddick, members of the Commission, and others.
In one of those documents Sitton makes reference to Craddick as a “half Arab ass,” pointing to the fact that Craddick’s mother is of Lebanese descent. Later on in that same email Sitton refers to staff of one Texas news organization as being “haji’s,” which are technically members of the Islamic faith who have made the pilgrimage to Mecca for Haj.
Many Texans who are of Lebanese descent have been in this country for years and were Christians fleeing persecution in their homeland for years. Craddick herself is a Catholic.
But the story does not stop there with Sitton. A nearly inaudible tape recording at a recent function that Sitton attended was made available. The source of that audio claims that while working the event in Dallas as a freelance reporter, he caught Sitton on tape making referring to Craddick as a “Lebanese C—t” and then continuing to talk about a Beto O’Rourke impression that Sitton would use during his remarks.
While the reporter claims the audio to be Sitton, an expert analysis conducted by Intellicorp shows that the tape is an 87% percent match to Sitton’s voice samples which were recorded in the event. The source of the tape has since provided it to other media outlets who we are told are also conducting their own analysis of the content. The source, who has obtained amd released recordings of political figures in the past says that it is his goal to release the tape publicly in the near future.
In another instance that shows Sitton potentially acting out of line, he is accused of leaving one Southeast Texas small business on the hook for at least $400 after not paying for warranty work completed on some off-road vehicles.
Back in 2014, Sitton brought 2 ATVs, a dirt bike and a golf cart to a local dealership for some additional to be completed there where he bought them. He ended up leaving the vehicles with the shop for 5 months before returning to pick them up.
“It is the God’s honest truth and it sure does speak to his character,” the owner said in an interview with STJ. “I helped him load it up (which I never do before the bill is paid, partly thanks to him) and he just said ‘you took too long see ya later’ and left.”
The excuse that Sitton gave was that he was too busy campaigning or taking office. The owner says that is fine–as long as he pays his bill.
Since the incident Sitton has been listed as a “banned” customer and that is just one of the small businesses that Sitton, a publicly elected official has hurt during his rise to political fame.
But Sitton is a friend to big business. In fact, he has taken big bucks in the form of campaign contributions from people who have business before the commission. People like Kelsy Warren, CEO of Energy Transfer Partners who gave Sitton $75,000.00.
Records also show that Sitton’s campaign took more than $1.8 million dollars in contributions from energy and natural gas industry related people or groups during his time in the political arena. Again, nearly all of which at some point in time had business being brought before the Railroad Commission.
Sitton is up for re-election against fellow Republican Jim Wright who declined comment. Early voting is currently underway and the primaries will be held on March 3, 2020