In 2018, Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia made history by becoming the first two Latinas elected to Congress from Texas. And since that election, I have watched as Escobar has continually made Texas proud.
Now in her second congressional term, Escobar has distinguished herself to such a point that I can’t help but envision her embarking upon a new chapter for herself and for Texas. For me, Escobar is truly the embodiment of what I would like to see in a state leader, which is why I believe she should run for governor.
Let’s start with the basics. Off the bat, Escobar has ample experience as a local and national legislator. She has served as both county commissioner and county judge in El Paso County. When Beto O’Rourke decided to run for Senate in 2018, she stepped up to run for his vacated seat.
But she was much more than O’Rourke’s replacement in Congress. From the moment Escobar entered the grounds of Congress, she made an impact. She very memorably rebuked Trump during his 2019 State of the Union. She delivered the Spanish language democratic rebuttal in 2020. And in 2020, she represented the state of Texas in the roll call for the Democratic National Convention.
That moment at the DNC was also a huge reminder of when Escobar truly heeded the call of being a public servant. Less than a year earlier, El Paso had been the site of the deadliest shooting for Latinos in this country’s history.
In the aftermath of the El Paso tragedy, Escobar was everywhere talking about the horrific circumstances that led to 23 people being killed in a Walmart on a Saturday morning. Since that terrible day, she has been stalwart in her support of gun safety laws. She has also not been shy about calling out Donald Trump and his defenders for supporting white supremacy. The El Paso shooter, after all, was a white supremacist who drove from Allen, Texas and had a manifesto with rhetoric that mirrored the president.
That’s who Veronica Escobar is. She’s not afraid of calling people out. Outside of the tragedy in El Paso, she made it her mission to confront the worst people in the Trump administration. I personally admired the ways she educated all of us about the despicably evil Chad Wolf, the acting Homeland Security Secretary, who was an architect of the family separation policy of the Trump administration.
In Escobar, I see a lot of the qualities that were personified in the last female Democratic Governor: Ann Richards. She is bold. She is fierce. And she will fight like hell for the working men and women of Texas. But Escobar is not Ann Richards. She is her own uniquely capable woman. One who could take on the Republican juggernaut of our state. The case for Veronica Escobar to run for governor, in my opinion, is strong.
‘The Case’ is a series from the Signal that explores who the potential Democratic candidates for Governor of Texas in 2022 are and why they could be our next governor.
Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call