Texas Tribune event attendees gather in the LBJ library.
Texas Tribune event attendees gather in the LBJ library. Credit: Courtesy / LBJ Library photo by Jay Godwin

Five candidates vying to represent the Democratic Party in the race for Texas’ 23rd Congressional District will gather for a debate Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m. at the Charline McCombs Media Center at KLRN San Antonio.

The competing candidates are Judy Canales, who has been appointed to positions inside U.S. Department of Agriculture by former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama; Jay Hulings, a former federal prosecutor from San Antonio; Gina Ortiz Jones, a former Air Force intelligence officer from San Antonio; Rick Treviño, a former Sam Houston High School teacher; and Angela Villescaz, a resident of Uvalde.

The winner of the March 6 primary, or possible May 22 primary runoff, will go on to run against incumbent U.S. Rep. Will Hurd (R-San Antonio) or his Republican primary challenger Alma Arredondo-Lynch. Hurd, a former undercover CIA officer and cybersecurity expert, is running for his third Congressional term. Arrendo-Lynch is a Uvalde-based dentist and rancher by trade and considers repealing Obamacare her top issue.

The 23rd Congressional District race is one of the most competitive in the country, with an electorate that voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election and simultaneously re-elected Hurd to his second term.

The Democratic candidates will cover topics such as immigration, health care, and other issues pertinent to the district during the hour-long debate, which will be moderated by Beth Frerking, editor-in-chief of the Rivard Report, and Patrick Svitek, the primary political correspondent for the Texas Tribune. The nonprofit news organizations are co-sponsoring and presenting the event.

The forum is free and open to the public, but those interested in attending are encouraged to register in advance. The event will be livestreamed here.

The 11-day early voting period for the March 6 primary began on Tuesday. Bexar County’s early voters have turned out more for Democratic primaries than Republican primaries so far, according to totals posted online by the Bexar County Elections Department. As of Saturday afternoon, 11,602 ballots were cast in Democratic primaries and 9,188 were cast in Republican primaries. Early voting continues Sunday through Friday.

For more information on upcoming Rivard Report events, click here.

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Jeffrey Sullivan

Jeffrey Sullivan is a Rivard Report reporter. He graduated from Trinity University with a degree in Political Science.