Reflections On: Meeting Joaquín Castro, and Annise Parker

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With Congressman Joaquín Castro at JFK Jr. Forum’s ‘A Conversation with The Honorable Joaquín Castro.’

Congressman Joaquín Castro first ran for Texas’ 125th House district in 2002, defeating incumbent Democrat Arthur Reyna, 64% to 36%, and in the general defeated Republican Nelson Balido, 60% to 40%. In 2004, he ran and won unopposed, and in 2006, ran and won against Republican Nelson Balido, 58% to 36%. In 2008, he ran and won unopposed, again, and in 2010, he ran and won a fifth term against  Libertarian Jeffrey Blunt, 78% to 22%.

On November 28th, 2011, after Congressman Charlie Gonzalez announced his retirement after seven terms, running unopposed in the heavily Democrat, Hispanic-majority district. He defeated Republican David Rosa 64% to 34% in the general election.

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With Mayor Annise Parker at Harvard’s Institute of Politics.

Mayor Annise Parker was first elected to the Houston City Council in 1997 as the first openly gay elected official in Houston and “one of few in Texas” when the first black Mayor, Lee Patrick Brown, was also elected, after two failed bids in 1991 and 1995 for City Council District C. In 2003, she ran, and won, City Controller, being unopposed and re-elected in 2005 and 2007.

In 2009, she announced her candidacy for Mayor of Houston. Entering the run-off election with the most votes against Houston City Attorney Gene Locke, she defeated him becoming Mayor-elect on December 12, 2009, and Houston became the largest city to elect an openly gay mayor. She ran successfully two more times, as Houston electeds are subject to term-limits spearheaded by conservative activist Clymer Wright. A supporter of HERO, which lost on the ballot, here is the concession speech:

In 2015, she endorsed her successor in the office, State Representative of District 139, Syvester Turner.

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