After years of national and state media frantically writing about how Democrats are supposedly losing the Hispanic vote in South Texas… and Texas Republicans redrawing the lines of the districts to make them more favorable to their party… and D.C. Republicans flooding our region with tens of millions of dollars in dark money and unending misinformation and bad-faith, misleading TV advertisements… we now see that 2020 was, in fact, a fluke.

Texas Republicans will tell you that picking up TX-15 shows that they’re gaining ground with Hispanics in South Texas. Let me be clear: that’s complete bullshit. The facts of the matter remain that Texas Republicans literally redrew TX-15 to be less Hispanic and more white – and they redrew it to become a district that was statistically guaranteed to go Republican. The reality is: the only way they can win a district in a predominately Hispanic region is by drawing the Hispanics out of the district, and couldn’t even pull it off without spending tens of millions of dollars. 

The drubbing they received in effectively all of the local and county-level races in the region just further bolsters that point – especially since, with those races, they had to play by real lines, not Republican-drawn ones.

Republicans promised to win (i.e. purchase) all three Congressional districts, and that would ostensibly bolster their argument of apparently making inroads with the Hispanic community. And after gerrymandering, and after pouring in tens of millions of D.C. dollars – they could barely squeak out a win in one of them. And even then, it was in the one district that national Democratic organizations inexplicably decided to all but abandon for the final stretch of the campaign.

There was no red wave in South Texas. There wasn’t even a red ripple. Republicans in Austin and D.C. should understand that if – even in a year where Republicans were supposed to win across the country in a landslide, they could barely eke out this one win here – they should probably pack up their bags and get the hell out of our region. 

We’re proud of the hard-fought campaign Michelle Vallejo ran in TX-15. Not only did she give a voice to the hard-working Latino families of the Rio Grande Valley, she also forced D.C. Republicans to spend millions of dollars on a district they — literally – drew to be able to win.

We’re excited to see Congressmen Cuellar and Gonzalez return to Congress to continue actually fighting for South Texas families, actually working for their fellow Latino Texans, and actually bringing in much-needed federal resources to the Rio Grande Valley.

Editor’s Note: The above guest column was penned by Gilberto Hinojosa, chairman of the Texas Democratic Party. The column appears in The Rio Grande Guardian with the permission of the author. Hinojosa can be reached by email via: [email protected].

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