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Former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez Loses Bid For Texas Governor

Christopher Connelly
Lupe Valdez, in a picture during her campaign, launched her bid for governor after serving four terms as Dallas County sheriff.

Former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez lost her bid against Gov. Greg Abbott. Valdez, who served four terms as sheriff, would have been the first Latina and openly gay governor.

Valdez conceeded the race at a statewide Democratic party in Austin. In her speech, she talked about her rise from humble beginnings and overcoming other challenges in life. She also thanked her supporters.

“Because of your efforts and the support of everyone here tonight, this Latina from the poorest zip code in San Antonio, who came from the crop fields to the classroom to your candidate just racked up the smallest margin in a two-way race for governor in over the last 20 years," she said.

Valdez also thanked the late, former Democratic Governor Ann Richards, saying Richards paved the way for other women. And she talked about people of different political stripes joining forces around common interests and causes.

“Together we have proven that this state and its people are wanting of a future where everyone can prosper, not just the wealthy few,” Valdez said.

Texas has had a Republican governor since 1994. Before Abbott, Rick Perry held the office for 14 years.

Stella M. Chávez is KERA’s immigration/demographics reporter/blogger. Her journalism roots run deep: She spent a decade and a half in newspapers – including seven years at The Dallas Morning News, where she covered education and won the Livingston Award for National Reporting, which is given annually to the best journalists across the country under age 35.