The congressional primary runoff race in south Texas shifts into high gear

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 12:22 PM CDT
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LAREDO, Tex. (KGNS) - It’s not only Webb County who is keeping an eye on the District 28 race. The whole country is watching as well.

17-year incumbent Henry Cuellar is facing off Jessica Cisneros again. Cuellar led with 48.4% in the March primary, while Cisneros received 46.9%. However, Cisneros nearly defeated Cuellar back in 2020.

Both have been endorsed by other major names within the Democratic party. Cisneros is backed by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Cuellar is backed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

District 28 includes part of San Antonio all the way down to the Rio Grande Valley. Both Cisneros and Cuellar are out campaigning, trying to get last-minute supporters to cast their vote. At their headquarters on Election Day, they had a few words to say about their political platform, especially on abortion rights.

On the topic of abortion, Cisneros says it is something that is very private that should be between a woman, her doctor, her family, her pastor and whomever she wants to bring into the conversation. She says, “All we’re saying is the government should have no place in this, it’s really upsetting to see people like Congressman Cuellar all of a sudden fighting for the government to have a say on how we plan our families or what we do with our lives, especially because as a man, he’s never going to have to make this decision and this is something very private for people to figure out on their own.”

Cuellar rebutted by saying Cisneros “believes in abortion with no restrictions and no parental consent on it, which is extreme.” He continues, “She thinks that late-term abortion, all the way to the 9th month or partial birth is okay. You cannot have that.” Cuellar says he supports women’s health, adding that “women’s health is making sure they get maternity support, making sure they get the health care. That’s what I’ve done.” Of Cisneros, Cuellar says, “every position she takes is an extreme. She takes an extreme position in abortion, she takes an extreme position in police, like defunding the police and she takes an extreme position in border security.”

The race for District 28 doesn’t end there. Whoever wins in the Democratic side still has to face with the opponent from the Republican Party. Cassy Garcia, a former staffer for Senator Ted Cruz, is up against Sandra Whitten, who has previously run against Cuellar in the general election.

According to the Secretary of State Office, Whitten took in over 18% of the votes while Garcia gained over 23% of the votes. Initially, there were seven candidates on the Republican ballot during the March primaries.

Over 600,000 people live within District 28.

The polls will remain open on Tuesday, May 24 until 7 p.m. Make sure to bring with you an official ID with your photo on it -- it can be a passport, a Texas ID or a Texas driver’s license. For information on polling sites you can click here or call the elections office at 956-523-4050.

Keep in mind, if you voted Democrat or Republican in the main election, you’ll have to vote that same ticket today.

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