A brief intro to Linda Chavez-Thompson

Video of Linda Chavez-Thompson’s filing day remarks, from The Trib.

They have more on Chavez-Thompson here. As I said, I’m really looking forward to Chavez-Thompson and Ronnie Earle making the case for themselves. And as expected, Chavez-Thompson’s candidacy has generated some excitement in South Texas.

“I am excited about the fact that Linda Chavez-Thompson is going to file for lieutenant governor. Along with Bill White, she will energize the statewide base of Democratic voters,” said Nelva Sosa-Slagle, co-founder of South Texas Democrats for Obama.


There was widespread concern that the statewide Democratic ticket would not reflect the changing demographics of the state of Texas because it would lack a high profile Latino candidate. [Ester Salinas, co-founder of the Justice Advocacy Group] said that all changes with Chavez-Thompson’s candidacy. She said the border region would be particularly excited.

“With the current recession, so many Texans are going without. Linda understands that. Her candidacy is a real spark that can have a big impact down here. People are sick of the same old politics. I am looking forward to Linda’s next visit to the Valley and helping her campaign.”

Sosa-Slagle said Chavez-Thompson would “energize” the Democratic base for a number of reasons.

“On a personal level, she can relate to the concerns of working-class Texans due to her humble beginnings which have served as an inspiration to many Latinas. On a professional level, she derives the expertise and vision for resolving these concerns from being a successful executive of the AFL-CIO and Democratic Party,” Sosa-Slagle said. “And, on a political level, she serves as a major contrast to the wealthy Republican incumbent David Dewhurst and the Austin restaurant owner Marc Katz.”

And speaking of the AFL-CIO, this is from Ed Sills’ email newsletter:

Needless to say, this is an extraordinary development for the labor movement in Texas. Chavez-Thompson will build a campaign over the next few days, and it’s only about eight weeks to the March 2 primary, so this thing will run fast and furious over the coming weeks. Other Democrats who have filed for the post include former Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle and Austin delicatessen owner Marc Katz. Chavez-Thompson made it clear during media questioning that she is running to make changes in Texas, not against the Democratic opponents. This is a good place to note as well that the Texas AFL-CIO Committee on Political Education won’t issue an endorsement in this contest until the COPE Convention on Feb. 6 and 7 and that only the delegates to that convention can finalize such an endorsement. That said, there is no question that Chavez-Thompson has the closest possible ties to the labor movement and there’s no point in pretending otherwise, so this newsletter will be watching the lieutenant governor’s race in detail.

She hasn’t won anything yet, and she has one strong and appealing opponent in Earle, and one with a lot of resources in Katz, so nobody should take anything for granted. But her potential is obvious, and it’s cool and amazing to see a race that three months ago was on no one’s radar generate so much buzz. Stace has more.

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