Politics

Sylvia Garcia, Armando Walle Enter Race To Succeed Congressman Gene Green

Green’s retirement makes it more likely Harris County will elect its first Hispanic member of Congress

Congressman Gene Green

The race to replace Congressman Gene Green has already begun. Green has represented Texas’ majority Hispanic 29th district for nearly a quarter century.

State Senator Sylvia Garcia is making her second run for the Democratic nomination. She ran in the district’s first primary in 1992. That year saw three candidates split the Latino vote, helping Green make the runoff and ultimately win. State Representative Armando Walle has also declared his candidacy.

Rice University political scientist Bob Stein expects the field to grow more crowded, with former Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia and State Representative Carol Alvarado as possible contenders. “I would expect not only a spirited and a competitive race but one that will go to a runoff and one that will probably tear at the seams of the Hispanic community,” said Stein.

Green has held his seat thanks to strong support from Hispanic constituents. He beat his last primary challenger, Adrian Garcia, by roughly two-to-one among Latino voters. But Stein said it’s unlikely any Anglo candidate could repeat Green’s feat next year.

“This is about pent-up frustration,” said Stein. “It’s been a long time. San Antonio, El Paso, even the Republicans have elected Hispanic members to the Congress. Harris County hasn’t.”

The Harris County Republican Party confirms that no GOP candidate has yet declared plans to run for Green’s seat.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas delegations in the U.S. House and Senate, as well as the Texas governorship, the state legislature, and county and city governments. Before taking up his current post, Andrew...

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