Our loyal supporters have almost paid off the debt of the 2004 campaign. The process of closing that campaign down will soon be finished. As a result, this website will have to be retired too, but a new one will take its place immediately.

Stay tuned, and in the spirit of the 32 morally principled U.S. House Members and one Senator who stood up for democracy, justice, and the Constitution on January 6,

Vanos Biography

David Van Os

Summarized Biography


Born:   February 19, 1950, Kilgore, Texas


Age:    54



  • Son of Seymour and Francene Van Os, of Tyler, Texas

  • Married to Rachel Barrios-Van Os, a native of San Antonio

  • Four children, B.J., son, age 20; Kay, daughter, age 19, freshman at UTSA; Maya, daughter, age 7, second grade; Leya, daughter, age 6, first grade

  • Family resides in San Antonio

Educational Background

  • National Merit Finalist

  • Graduated Kilgore High School, May 1968

  • Awarded General Motors Scholarship (competitive) to attend University of Texas at Austin

  • Entered U.T. Austin September 1968, in Plan II, interdisciplinary honors degree program

  • Selected Junior Fellow, UT- Austin, 1970

  • Graduated U.T. Austin in Plan II, Cum Laude, May 1972

  • Entered U.T. Law School, August 1973

  • Received Human Rights Research Council Distinguished Research & Writing Award, 1974

  • Graduated U.T. Law School, August 1976

Employment and Professional Background



Associate Counsel, National Treasury Employees Union


Associate, Law Office of David R. Richards


In-house counsel for District 12, Texas, Communications Workers of America


General Counsel, Texas AFL-CIO


Member and managing shareholder of law firm concentrating in Union-side labor law, representation of workers, and civil rights and human rights issues - David Van Os & Associates, P.C., composed of six lawyers, located in San Antonio, with regional practice from Texas to Missouri


Professional Honors


Ø       AV-Rated Attorney, Martindale-Hubbell peer rating system, highest rating for legal ability and ethics


Ø       Listed in Best Lawyers in America, Woodward & White, by peer review, Labor & Employment Law, since 1986


Ø       Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation, by invitation


Ø       Member, College of the State Bar of Texas


Ø       Listed in Texas Monthly’s “Super Lawyers 2003”




Political & Community Activities, Positions, & Honors


Ø       Life Member, NAACP


Ø       1985-1995 – Member, Board of Directors, Texas Equal Access to

Justice Foundation, by appointment of Texas Supreme Court


Ø       1990 – President’s Citation for Achievement in Civil Rights, Austin NAACP


Ø       1990 – Civil Libertarian of the Year Award, Central Texas Chapter, ACLU


Ø       2002 – Texas Women’s Political Caucus “Good Guy” Award


Ø       Attended every Texas Democratic State Convention since 1974


Ø       Block-walked for Democratic Party general election tickets in 1972, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, and 2002


Ø       President, Northeast Austin Democrats, 1978-1980


Ø       Democratic Precinct Chairman, Travis County, 1981-88


Ø       Travis County Democratic Party Chairman, 1996-98


Ø       Ran in statewide General Election as Democrat for Texas Supreme Court, 1998


Ø       2000-2003 – Chairman, North East Bexar County Democrats


Ø       2001-03 – Democratic Precinct Chairman, Bexar County


Ø       Represented Austin NAACP in federal voting rights suit over Austin City Council elections


Ø       Represented LULAC in federal voting rights suit over Austin School Board elections


Ø       Represented Central Texas ACLU in federal suit over re-segregation of Austin AISD elementary schools


Ø       Traveled to Palm Beach, Florida, November-December 2000, to assist Democratic Party in vote recount efforts

Our Continuing Mission

Message to Supporters and Allies

From David Van Os -- November 14, 2004


Over two and one-quarter centuries ago our mission in the world as Americans was forged in revolution against imperial tyranny and framed in the noble words of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. The Constitutional democracy and liberties borne by history’s greatest revolution are the birthright of each of us as Americans. As Americans we are proud of our birthright and we are proud of our historical mission. That mission continues in the heart of each of us.


Today, we are called upon to preserve that mission, and to protect it from those who seek to obstruct Constitutional checks and balances and who seek to render Constitutional liberties subject to radical Republican sufferance. Since those who currently seek to undermine the vision of Washington and Jefferson are rooted in Texas, this state is one of the primary battlefields in the fight to preserve the spirit of our Constitutional framework.


For my part, the fight continues. I am sure that is the case with you, too. While I am disappointed that political operatives of my Party, who constructed strategy this year, did not understand the significance of Texas as a battlefield, let you and I together assure the opponents of the Constitution that Texas is not a free ride for them. The battle is joined and the fight continues.



Statement of David Van Os Regarding Texas Supreme Court Contest


I recognize that my opponent will be declared to have received the most votes. However, I cannot in good conscience concede an election when millions of votes were cast on electronic machines that do not provide verification that the vote was recorded as the voter intended.


I am sad for the people of Texas. It appears that according to the vote-counters the people of Texas continue to be in the grip of the Republican power machine that does not serve the interests of the people. However, as they say in East Texas where I grew up, I’ll fight ‘em ‘til hell freezes over and then I’ll fight ‘em on the ice. I am committed to the fight to restore Texas to a place that serves the people’s interests instead of the selfish special interests.


Although winning this fight evidently will take longer than I was hoping, I intend to be around for a long time and I am committed to the fight. It was an honor to be at the side of so many of you in the particular phase of the fight represented by the 2004 general election contest for a seat on the Texas Supreme Court.



David Van Os Responds to Newspaper Endorsement

Once again, a newspaper editor who should know better displays the pro-corporate hypocrisy that has been suffocating the people of Texas for too long.

The San Antonio Express-News editorial column of October 15 recognizes that the all-Republican Texas Supreme Court needs balance, yet endorses my arch-conservative Republican opponent on the grounds that I am too partisan because I am a “populist liberal Democrat.” In the same breath the Express-News applauds my republican opponent for being “conservative.”

Why is it that being a liberal Democrat is too partisan but campaigning as a conservative Republican is not? Since even to pose this question reveals the hypocrisy of the San Antonio Express-News and the other corporate newspapers that have taken the same position regarding my candidacy, the real answer has to be that the corporate newspaper moguls want a Texas Supreme Court that continually caters to selfish corporate interests and slams shut the courthouse doors against the people. Why should anyone really be surprised?

“Populist” means being for the people; “liberal” comes from “liberty” and means being for the people’s Constitutional liberties; “Democrat” means being of the political party and tradition of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Henry B. Gonzalez, and Ann Richards. I accept all of these labels with pride, and I thank the corporate newspaper establishment for revealing its true colors by criticizing me for being for the people, for liberty, and for proudly being of the political party and tradition of Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Gonzalez and Richards.

In contrast, the Texas Publishers Association, composed of the 22 leading African-American newspaper publishers in Texas, endorsed me by acclamation – the first endorsement by acclamation in the organization’s 20-year history. The news organs of our state’s historically most disenfranchised and disempowered citizens clearly recognize the need to put a voice for the people on the Texas Supreme Court. Their unanimous endorsement is a proud personal highlight for me, and I would not trade it for all of the corporate endorsements in Texas. I say to the people of Texas that we will win this battle, and we will put a populist, liberal, Democratic voice for the people on the Texas Supreme Court.

Endorsements of the Campaign for Justice!

Democracy For America
Communications Workers of America
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
Iron Workers District Council of the State of Texas
International Brotherhood of Teamsters
United Auto Workers
American Federation of Government Employees
San Antonio AFL-CIO Council
San Antonio Firefighters Union Local 624
Teamsters Local 745, Dallas
Austin Black Lawyers Association
Hispanic Bar Association of Austin
San Antonio Stonewall Democrats
Baron & Budd
The Progressive Populist Caucus of the Texas Democratic Party
Texas Carpenters & Millwrights Regional Council, United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners of America
Texas Working Families Political Action Committee
Rio Grande Valley Teachers Association

Endorsements of the Campaign for Justice!

Endorsements of the Campaign for Justice!

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A People's Lawyer Who Will Be A People's Judge