“If the proposed Texas Congress cards are accepted, a large portion of my constituency will be in District 34,” Gonzalez said in a statement first sent to POLITICO. “I’ve received many calls from all over South Texas encouraging me to run in this district. If these are indeed the definitive cards, I will seriously consider running into 34 and continuing my showing of South Texas and the Rio Grande Valley . “
House Republicans who are Gonzalez ‘current district based in McAllen as. have identified their top pickup opportunity in Texas, will welcome the news that the Democrats are losing power to the incumbents on a tough battlefield.
Gonzalez, who was first elected in 2016, said he has over $ 2 million in his campaign account that he can use in a primary election for the seat of the Vela. He also said if he switched districts he would “make sure we have another candidate” who could keep his 15th district in democratic hands.
Even before the GOP-controlled redistribution began, Gonzalez was likely to face tough re-election. Its current borough, which includes McAllen and extends north towards San Antonio, took a sharp right turn last year.
Hillary Clinton won the 2016 seat by 17 points; but Joe Biden won it four years later with only 2 points. Meanwhile, Gonzalez saw his win margin shrink to 3 points in 2020 against an opponent who spent less than $ 300,000. This candidate, Monica De La Cruz-Hernandez, will run again this cycle.
All three districts in the Rio Grande Valley saw a similar shift to the right in 2020 – something that the incumbents attributed to both Trump’s rise among Latino men and some progressive proposals and slogans by the Democrats that weren’t doing well along the border.
That made all three of them a target for GOP mapmakers to redistribute. So far, the state legislature has behaved rather conservatively and proposed To turn Gonzalez’s district into a battlefield and give it to his neighbor to the west, the Democratic Representative. Henry Cuellar, a seat that Biden would have worn 7 points.
The Republicans’ card would turn the seat of Vela, who announced his resignation earlier this year, in Brownsville into a seat that backed Biden by nearly 16 points in 2020.
In a statement to POLITICO, Vela said: “I will support Congressman Gonzalez no matter which district he runs in.”
Gonzalez said he was considering running for Vela’s seat because the incumbent is retiring and because Vela has taken over some of his Democratic voters from Hidalgo County.
But Gonzalez wasn’t going to run into an empty Democratic prefix. He could still face carpet excavator attacks because his hometown of McAllen is in his old borough, and he’s also more moderate and a member of the Blue Dog Coalition.
Four The Democrats have applied for the seat. The most prominent is Rochelle Garza, a Brownsville civil rights attorney. But most will likely struggle to keep up with Gonzalez’s war chest.
A litigation attorney by profession, Gonzalez also has the option to self-finance.