To inform readers about the candidates seeking their votes on the November ballot, the San Antonio Report asked all candidates to answer the following questions. We edited answers for clarity, not substance or grammar, and we did not fact-check responses. We restricted responses to 200 words for each question.
Read other candidates’ answers here.
Link to campaign website:
Education background/degrees earned:
Associates, bachelor’s, master’s degree, Juris Doctor, and Ph.D. in Government
Current occupation, employer, or job title:
Previous elected offices held and/or sought:
Texas Secretary of State, Texas State Representative
Why do you feel you are the best candidate for the office you are seeking?
I am proud to represent the people of the 28th District of Texas. I have a proven record of fighting on behalf of the people and delivering successes to San Antonio and its neighboring communities. My values and legislative accomplishments are based on the belief that education, family values, and hard work should open doors to new opportunities for all Americans. I am best suited to serve our community in Congress because I am the only Texas Democrat in Congress seated on the powerful U.S. House Appropriations Committee. Through this role, I am provided the ability to personally ensure San Antonio, Bexar County, and its neighboring communities receive their fair share of support from the federal government. I’ve worked tirelessly to advocate for needed funding to aid the communities’ education, health care, and infrastructure systems. Also, I strongly believe we have an obligation to care for and honor America’s veterans and their families for their undeniable service. My role on the House Appropriations committee has allowed me to ensure new benefits to veterans and increase their support systems at home. I say with confidence, no one will fight harder for the community, will put in the time, energy and effort needed to make sure Texans and the people of the San Antonio community are put first and voices are heard.
What three issues do you feel are most important to voters in your district?
I listen to the people of my district and they share with me their want of Congress to fight for: fair-paying jobs, affordable health care, and a quality education. I have protected and created jobs for the community by supporting initiatives that ensure our community prospers. I’ve worked collaboratively alongside our universities, U.S. military, government agencies, small business, and various industries throughout our region to create well-paying jobs the people of Texas and the San Antonio area. I have protected and provided affordable health care while serving in Congress by passing and improving the Affordable Care Act to lower health costs and prescription drug prices. As our nation faces an unprecedented health crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic, I have helped secure and pass legislation to provide funding for personal protective equipment, testing, and access to treatment. A strong education system is an investment in the future of our nation. My efforts in Congress have brought necessary resources to the region which provides Texas students access to an education leading to professional success and the development. I’ve spent my time in Congress committed to investing in schools, teachers, and students. I proudly authored the TEXAS Grant program – the largest in Texas history – that today gives thousands of students the opportunity to achieve a college education. I commit to keeping the priorities of our community top of mind in my work in Congress.
If elected, what would be your top priorities after taking office?
There is still more work to be done in Congress, and I have much more to achieve for the people of Texas. Now more than ever we need common-sense individuals who are willing to stop the name-calling, roll up their sleeves, and do the work needed to protect the American people. I’ve proven I can do that, have done that, and will continue to do that for the community. I am committed to working with my colleagues in Congress and the administration to rebuild our economy and protect the public from the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. I will continue the fight to end social and racial injustices in our communities. I will continue my efforts to fixing America’s broken immigration system and to protect our young Dreamers to be the voice of those who are not heard.
How has the coronavirus pandemic shaped your priorities?
The COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis the American people have never seen before. Over 200,000 lives have been lost, 30 million are out of work, and unfortunately, the end is not clearly in sight. The pandemic has likely changed our entire nation’s perspective and priorities moving forward. Unexpected crises may happen, but we should never leave our country vulnerable to its wrath as the COVID-19 pandemic has done to the American people and the world. Partisan fighting must end. The coronavirus pandemic has shown fighting between political parties only hurts the everyday American people. I have always committed myself to being someone who fights for the people, not political party. Common-sense solutions to many of the country’s toughest challenges is the only way to protect our great nation.
For incumbents: What do you consider your most significant accomplishments in office? What would you change?
I am proud to have achieved the position to serve on the powerful House Appropriations Committee as the only Texas Democrat, which allows me to fight for the people of the district more effectively. As a senior member of Congress, I am proud to have delivered tens of millions of dollars in funding to address local priorities. I have worked to established a reputation for bringing common sense to Congress and always put the families I represent first. In Congress, I was able to author the GPRA Modernization Act of 2010, which made law metrics to ensure government efficiency, effectiveness, and performance improvement. This law is intended to be a building block to better protect the American people from government waste.
For non-incumbents: What, if anything, would you do differently from the current officeholder?