Dallas Co. Sheriff Lupe Valdez running for Texas Governor

At the Texas Democratic Party Headquarters on Wednesday morning, Lupe Valdez filed the paperwork to run for Governor.
"I've been a migrant farm worker, a working college student, an Army veteran, a Federal agent and the very proud Sheriff of the good people of Dallas County. 

Valdez, the state's first Hispanic female sheriff and the state's first openly gay sheriff, says she stepped down from the job Wednesday morning so she could run for statewide office.

"For far too long, hard working Texans have been left behind, kept out and frankly attacked for who they are, where they come from and who they love," Valdez said.  

Around the same time, Governor Abbott's campaign released a new ad: an endorsement from the Dallas Police Association

"Governor Greg Abbott has been a true advocate for law enforcement in Dallas and throughout our state.  He has strengthened protections for our officers in the line of duty," the ad says. 

"What I have found, when associations make decisions like that it's not the response of everybody in the association, it's the response of the leaders," Valdez said in response to the endorsement.   

Many of the questions directed toward Valdez were about the uphill battle she's facing in a Republican state.

"Texas is not a red state, it's a ‘non-voting’ state.  We need to let the people know that we're here," she said.

Dr. Roy Casagranda, a government professor at ACC explains that.

"One of the problems that the democrats have is even though they actually have more people in Texas, at least according to the election in 2016, those people don't show up to vote in large enough numbers," Casagranda said.  

Ed Espinoza with Progress Texas says progressive voters haven't had a reason to come out and vote.  He says democrats have tried the "moderate" thing -- it doesn't work.

"They're the party of Trump.  We've got to be the opposite.  Nobody is looking for 'Trump-light.'  We've got to do something completely different," Espinoza said.  

Casagranda says Republicans do have the momentum but the state could start to turn purple in 2018.

"If I were a Republican I would be out there working really hard, if I was a Democrat I would be working really hard because it's definitely not a done deal for the Democrats," Casagranda said.  

Texas hasn't had a Democratic governor since Ann Richards and that was more than 20 years ago.

"Ann Richards was special, I mean she was charming, people liked her a lot.  People loved Ann Richards," he said.

Casagranda says the political landscape was different then not just in Texas but across the country. 

"There were liberal Republicans and there were conservative Democrats.  It just doesn't mean as much as it does today.  Today we don't even live in the same neighborhoods," he said.

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