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Sunday, January 10, 2016

"Just a Thought" Column continues in L Prensa of SA, 1-10

Just a Thought: 2016 Hispanic candidates
by Steve Walker

Once again it is time to gear up for a presidential election to include all the down ballot candidates from Congressional races to Justice of the Peace and Constables.

Traditionally, every election a number of local Hispanic candidates from both parties vie with others to represent Bexar County as well as statewide offices. This year is unique with two Hispanic candidates running for President of the United States that includes Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Texas Senator Ted Cruz.

When Senator Cruz first ran for Senator, I had the opportunity to cover him on more than one occasion for my blog, He was very affable and approachable.

One local Hispanic Republican candidate, Weston Martinez, is also running statewide in a field of 10 for Texas Railroad Commissioner. I have known Weston for a number of years since he ran for City Council.

Locally we have two contested congressional races that pits former opponents in past general elections. They include the former Democratic Congressman from the 23rd District, Pete Gallego against the man who took his seat in 2014, Republican, Will Hurd. Congressman Gallego was gracious in writing me a recommendation when I applied to work in Washington D.C. three years ago.

Republican candidate for the 35th Congressional District Susan Narvaiz is also attempting a second run against long term incumbent Democrat Lloyd Doggett.  28th Congressional District incumbent Democrat Henry Cuellar is opposed by fellow Democrat William Hayward in the March 1st Democratic Primary. There is no General Election opponent.

Congressman Joaquin Castro from the 20th Congressional District is unopposed by both parties. I have attended and written about his annual birthday celebrations with his brother for the past few years for La Prensa.

In the State Senatorial races, District 19 Democratic incumbent Carlos Uresti, is facing a Democratic opponent in the Primary, South San ISD Board Member Helen Madla and Republican Pete Flores. I taught Uresti’s son, Michael as a student at McCollum High School.

In the Senatorial race for District 26, Democratic Incumbent Jose Menendez is facing fellow Democrat and District 116 State Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer with no Republican challenger.

Moving on to the State Rep. Races, District 116 which is now open, three Hispanic Democrats, Martin Golindo, Ruby Resendez and Diana Arevelo square off in the Primary with a pass from the Republicans.

In District 117 there is a rematch between incumbent Republican Rick Galindo vs. Democrat and former Rep. Philip Cortez who lost to Galindo in 2014.

In District 118 two Democrats, Tomas Uresti, and Gabe Farias will face off vs. two Republicans, John Lujan and Robert Casias. The seat was vacated by Gabe Farias’ father Joe Farias who stepped down for health reasons.

A special runoff election January 26th to fill the unexpired term of Rep. Joe Farias till the November election pits Harlandale ISD Board Member Tomas Uresti and John Lujan. District 119 Democrat State Rep. Roland Gutierrez is unopposed as is Democrat District 123 Democrat Diego Bernal.

Incumbent Democrat State Rep. District 124 Ina Minjarez is challenged only by fellow Democrat Sergio Contreras in the March 1st Primary. Incumbent Democrat State Rep. District 125 Justin Rodriguez, who I have known since he served on City Council, is unopposed by both parties.

Next week’s “Just a Thought” will focus on Hispanic candidates for Sheriff, Commissioner’s Court, Constables, Tax Assessor, and judicial races.

As always, what I write is Just a Thought.

Steve Walker is a Vietnam Veteran, former Journalist and Justice of the Peace.

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