Dave Wilson beat Houston's 24-year incumbent Bruce Austin by 26 votes by portraying himself to be a black man in flyers.
The surprise winner of a Texas election has been criticized for misleading the mainly black constituents into believing he was African American.
Dave Wilson, a white Republican and anti-gay activist, beat Houston's 24-year incumbent Bruce Austin in what has been described as a ‘racially tinged campaign'.
Mr Wilson won with a margin of 26 after he campaigned using flyers featuring African Americans and the message ‘Vote for our neighbor Dave Wilson'.
‘I'd always said it was a long shot. I didn't expect to win,' the former fringe candidate told KHOU.
His flyers, designed using pictures he had found on the internet, also claimed he had been endorsed by Ron Wilson for the Houston community college seat.
Many in the area could have been led to believe the endorsement was from the former African-American state representative but the small print stated the Ron Wilson in question was the candidate's cousin.
‘He's a nice cousin,' Mr Wilson told KHOU as he held back a laugh. ‘We played baseball in high school together. And he's endorsed me.'
Political scientists have said it is unlikely that Mr Wilson's flyers would have had much impact on his campaign, but the Democrat he unseated was not impressed.
‘I don't think it's good for both democracy and the whole concept of fair play. But that was not his intent, apparently,' Mr Austin said.
He tried to counter the campaign by releasing flyers showing Mr Wilson and labeling him a ‘right-wing hate-monger'.
Mr Austin said he intends to call for a recount but analysts believe Mr Wilson's victory will be upheld, putting him in office for six years.
I think this is awesome, that just shows that the only reason some people voted for him is because they thought he was black. Talk about racist voters!! Plus if you are too stupid and ignorant to even know who you are voting for then you are a huge problem to this society in a whole.
seems fair to me , after all , obama won the election pretending to be american
If the election were won as a result of the flyers, this would indicate to me the vote was racially motivated. This is a lost opportunity for those needing change not becoming familiar with the candidates.