Ending weeks of uncertainty, Dallas County Sheriff Guadalupe "Lupe" Valdez announced Wednesday she is running for governor, giving Texas Democrats a Hispanic standard-bearer they hope will boost minority turnout to end their two-decade drought at winning statewide office. Andrew White, son of late Gov. Mark White, is expected to throw his hat into the ring - marking the eighth Democrat to enter the race - on Thursday in Houston. She's notably the only gay, female, hispanic sheriff in the state. Wendy Davis enjoyed in 2014.
"I think that if Sheriff Valdez runs and if Mr. Opportunity in Texas ought to be as big as this great state, but it is out of reach for far too many, that's why I'm running for Texas Governor", said Valdez. "I believe good government can make people's lives better, and I intend to do just that".
They will appear on the Democratic primary ballot next March 6. Abbott's only primary opponent at the moment is a perennial candidate named Larry SECEDE Kilgore. Her campaign said she will officially notify the Dallas County Commissioners Court of her decision to run for governor this morning.
Valdez is now serving her fourth term as Dallas County sheriff, and she drew national headlines when she was first elected in 2004 as the nation's first openly gay Hispanic sheriff.
The governor quickly announced plans to cut state law enforcement grants to sanctuary jurisdictions that chose not to comply with federal immigration law.
Party leaders praise Valdez for her political chops.
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Casagranda says Republicans do have the momentum but the state could start to turn purple in 2018. Her office oversees the second largest county jail in Texas. But Davis lost to Abbott by 20-points. "Today we don't even live in the same neighborhoods", he said. "Obviously in the platform of the Democratic Party, there's a very strong pro-women's health, pro-choice plank on that, but it's not a disqualifier if someone is not, and so, you know, if he wants to run, he's welcome into our party".
"Texas is not a red state, it's a nonvoting state", said Valdez.
Valdez told a packed room of reporters at the party's headquarters in downtown Austin that she was running to help everyday Texans, who are concerned about issues ranging from healthcare and retirement to immigration and being deported. We've tried the republican light, the moderate thing it doesn't work. He has more than $40-million in his campaign account.
Valdez dismissed the endorsement as not reflecting the view of the association's full membership. But he made clear he sees himself with an advantage at this stage in the race, noting that he is "six months ahead of anyone who's going to suddenly announce".
"Abbott may have the money", she said.
Among candidates like Payne and Wakely, there's not much love for the state party and its apparent efforts to recruit a candidate for governor with a higher profile. "For the Dreamers, if this isn't their country, they don't have a country", Valdez declared. Republicans have picked up maybe 100,000 votes in 10 years. "Texans and Texas businesses are begging for a return of common sense".