Long simmering feud leads to prank sign in the center of Liberty County Commissioners race

Miya Shay Image
Monday, May 9, 2022
'Silver Alert' political banner causes buzz in Liberty Co.
A banner promoting a fake Silver Alert issued for Liberty County Pct. 4 commissioner Leon Wilson caused buzz after election results were thrown out.

LIBERTY COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- In a rural corner of Liberty County, a tongue-in-cheek banner erected on Leonard Vyarol's property exposes a long feud that could impact the outcome of the Precinct 4 Commissioners election.

The banner is a fake Silver Alert issued for a Liberty County Precinct 4 Commissioner Leon Wilson, who is running for re-election in the Republican primary against Craig McNair.

Vyarol says he and Wilson have been feuding for almost a decade.

"Ever since he's been in office. He's been the worst commissioner we ever had," said the 71-year-old.

A few days ago, Vyarol put up the sign on his property. Craig, a former Liberty County Judge who lives just down the street, says he had nothing to do with it.

"No, no, I asked Leonard not to do it because I'm going to get blamed for it," said McNair. "But, he said, I'm going to do it anyway. So it's freedom of speech. Do what you want to do."

Commissioner Wilson scoffed at that denial.

"He is the creator of the problem," said the incumbent. "Oh, he did it. No doubt about it. Leonard is his right-hand man. Leonard is the one out here talking to people putting the signs out."

This primary election between two Republicans should have settled in March during the Republican primary. In that race, incumbent Wilson won by five votes. However, McNair alleged that the redistricting process changed the lines, and the election staff did not have all the information. As a result, several voters were disenfranchised and did not get to vote in the precinct they lived in for the Republican primary.

As Bluebonnet News first reported, a visiting judge from Montgomery County decided to throw out the March election results.

Bluebonnet News first reported.

Commissioner Leon Wilson says even though he believes the judge was wrong, an appeal would be costly.

Therefore, he agreed to a redo, where voters will again decide between Wilson and McNair in a special election. That election will be during the regular May runoff.

"Let's have another race. Let's do it. We'll let the people decide," said Wilson.

"I'd like to tone it down a little," said McNair. He hopes both men can run on their record and avoid controversy leading up to the rematch.

As for Vyarol, he's not backing down from his opinions or sign.

"You're dang right I'm proud of it," he says. "I'm getting peoples attention to get that guy out of the office."

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