Sunday, September 23, 2012

10 areas within Texas that made it among Pew’s top 60 Hispanic metropolitan areas

Bellow are the 10 areas within Texas that made it among Pew’s top 60 Hispanic metropolitan areas: 3. Houston-Brazoria, TX with Hispanic population of 2,044,000 6. Dallas-Fort Worth, TX with Hispanic population of 1,746,000 9. San Antonio, TX with Hispanic population of 1,090,000 13. McAllen-Edinburg-Pharr-Mission, TX with Hispanic population of 707,000 14. El Paso, TX with Hispanic population of 662,000 20. Austin, TX with Hispanic population of 502,000 29. Brownsville-Harlingen-San Benito, TX with Hispanic population of 359,000 36. Laredo, TX with Hispanic population of 240,864 46. Corpus Christi, TX with Hispanic population of 157,275 55. Odessa, TX with Hispanic population of 124,633

Friday, April 06, 2012

Congratulations to for Winning Pollie Award

A website that highlights the work of Texas State Representative Aaron Peña ( has received a Pollie Award from the American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC). The Pollies, considered the Oscars of political consulting, are scored and awarded by a blind panel of industry judges chosen from inside the association.

The award recognized the work of Rep. Peña's internet consultants Upstream Communications of Austin, Texas.

“I congratulate our agency, Upstream Communications for great creative work and for helping me through our award winning website communicate with my constituents and the people of Texas,” said Rep. Aaron Peña.

The Pollie Awards were presented on March 30 in Austin, Texas. The AAPC was founded in 1969 as a multi-partisan, nonprofit organization for political professionals. Each year the organization recognizes the best of the best in the business in over 600 political campaign and public affairs categories.

Upstream Communications received a total of 5 Pollie awards at the 2012 Annual Conference.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Hidalgo County Democratic Party Chair Dolly Elizondo has been urged to run against State Rep. Aaron Peña.

Democrats to avoid 'bloody' primary battle in fight to dislodge Peña
15 July 2011
Steve Taylor

MISSION, July 15 - Leading Democrats looking to challenge Republican state Rep. Aaron Peña in the reconfigured House District 41 seat will not fight each other in a “bloody” primary election.

Instead, they will reach a backroom deal within the next few weeks in order to promote one prominent candidate that the party can get behind, says Hidalgo County Democratic Party Chair Dolly Elizondo.

Elizondo has expressed interest in running for the District 41 seat, as has former Hidalgo County Democratic Party Chair R.D. “Bobby” Guerra. Elizondo said she and Guerra are in discussions.

“Our strategy is to have one candidate run,” Elizondo said, in an exclusive interview with the Guardian. “We are very united as a party. We do have people that want to run, myself included, Bobby Guerra, and possibly another young lawyer. We are in constant communication. We are not going to have a bloody primary where we have four Democrats running for that one position.”

Elizondo said that to have a highly competitive primary race next March would sap campaign dollars that need to be conserved for the general election fight against Peña in November 2012.

Elizondo said the Hidalgo County Democratic Party would likely hold a news conference before the end of July to announce the “consensus” candidate.

District 41 has undergone a radical remake following redistricting. The Republican-dominated Legislature redrew the boundary lines to take in a lot more Republican precincts. The McAllen-based district now includes much of Mission and southwest Edinburg. In short, the more affluent parts of the greater McAllen area.

One affluent part of McAllen the district does not include is a tiny stretch around Dove Avenue and 2nd Street where state Rep. Veronica Gonzales, the District 41 incumbent, lives. Republicans wanted to remove Gonzales from her district so that Peña would not be “paired” with her. Peña’s home was drawn into District 41 to maximize his chances of re-election.

Analysts say the district is a swing seat that could go Republican or Democrat. A Republican has never been elected into office in Hidalgo County. Although a Republican now, Peña was elected into office last November as a Democrat. He switched parties soon after the GOP’s landslide victory.

Last week, Gonzales said she would not seek re-election in District 41 and might seek to run in the heavily Democratic District 40 seat that Peña currently holds. That district, too, has been drastically redrawn. Gonzales said she would not run against Peña not because she did not believe she could defeat him but because such a race was bound to get ugly.

The new districts have still to be pre-cleared by the Department of Justice. The civil rights division of that agency must check to see if the Voting Rights Act, which protects the interests of minority voters, has been violated.

Elizondo said she and other Democrats are hopeful the DoJ will strike down the Republican-drawn map because this would mean Gonzales staying on as the McAllen representative. However, she said Democrats have to plan on the basis that the new map will be used at the next election.

“We are hoping the Department of Justice strikes down the Republican map. It will be a great loss for McAllen to lose Veronica. She is a leader of this community, of the Rio Grande Valley. She is very accessible and has never been self-serving,” Elizondo said.

Elizondo said Guerra would be a strong candidate in District 41, as would she.

“Bobby has a lot of support. He has visibility. He is well known and liked. There are people urging me to run, too. I broke the record, being the first female Hidalgo County Democratic Party chair. But, you will not see Bobby and I run against each other. You will see a united front. We will pick the best candidate to win,” Elizondo said.

Although Guerra and Elizondo will not run against each other in a primary race, Elizondo was quick to stress that she did not want to circumvent the democratic process.

“I do not want to step on anyone’s hopes or dreams of running. That is not what the Democratic Party does. Anyone can run. However, amongst those of us who have been in elected office, we will reach an agreement. We are getting together with the party leaders now the legislative session is over and the money brokers. They are the ones that are going to help fund this. We will use our funds wisely,” Elizondo said.

Elizondo acknowledged that the way the boundary lines have been drawn for District 41 gives Peña a chance of success. She said she realizes Republicans from across the state will pour money into his campaign in order to achieve a beachhead for the GOP in the Valley.

“We know Hidalgo County has a bull’s eye on it for the Republicans. They will pour money into this race. But, money is not everything. At the end of the day, it is whether the constituents believe in the candidate, whether they trust the candidate, whether they believe you when you say you are going to fight for them,” Elizondo said.

Asked what might be a winning strategy for Democrats against Peña, Elizondo spoke about trust and character.

“Everyone in the Valley, from all strands of life, knows what Aaron did to this community. He turned his back on the people who elected him and he turned his back on what is best for this region. The Valley lost a Texas House seat because of him. He did not stand up and fight for us,” Elizondo said.

“I can respect Aaron more if he were to say, the Republican Party now reflects my values. This is who I am. But he didn’t. He said the Democratic Party drove him out. He always plays the victim. He needs to be bigger than that.”

Elizondo added that the Hidalgo County Democratic Party has two political action committees that the public can give money to. One is a general purpose PAC called Keep Hidalgo Blue. The other is a single purpose PAC called The Committee to Defeat Aaron Peña.

Elizondo promised that whomever the Democratic candidate is, he or she would run a spirited campaign. “We know the Republicans are going to pour money into this race to save Aaron. But we are ready to knock on every door. We are going to have the best grassroots plan,” she said.

© Copyright of the Rio Grande Guardian, Publisher: Steve Taylor.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Thank You For Honoring Pedro Cano

Thank you all so much for joining us in honoring the memory and the family of Private Pedro Cano.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Last Speech of Cuauhtemoc

Last Speech of Tlatoani Cuauhtemoc, August 12, 1521

"Our Sun has gone down. Our Sun has been lost from view and has left us in complete darkness. But we know it will return again that it will rise again to light us anew. But while it is there in the Mansion of Silence Let's join together, let's embrace each other and in the very center of our being hide all that our hearts love and we know is the Great Treasure. Let us hide our Temples our schools, our sacred soccer game our youth centers our houses of flowery song so that only our streets remain. Our homes will enclose us until our New Sun rises. Most honorable fathers and most honorable mothers, may you never forget to guide your young ones teach your children, while you live how good it has been and will be. Until now our beloved Anahuac sheltered and protected our destinies that our ancestors and our parents enthusiastically received and seeded in our being. Now we will instruct our children how to be good. They will raise themselves up and gain strength and as goodness make real their great destiny in this, our beloved mother Anahuac."

Friday, February 12, 2010

Rep. Peña Joins National, State and Local Organizations Calling for Complete Census Count

Austin - State Representative Aaron Peña has joined a group of community organizations from across the state and nation in calling for a comprehensive and complete census count. MALDEF in collaboration with grassroots partners has formed the Texas Latino Complete Count Committee in order to reach the hardest to count communities. Representative Peña joined the group at a press conference in Austin recently to announce the initiative.

"My community of Hidalgo County is ranked number eleven in the country for the number of people living in hard to count areas and we are number two in the percentage of people living in hard to count areas," said Rep. Peña. " It is so important that Texas has a statewide strategy for an accurate and complete census count. We have just received a briefing in the House Committee on Redistricting and Texas has a chance of a minimum of three new congressional seats with a good count but a shot at four new congressman with a great count."

Texas has the second highest hard-to-count areas in the country. Populations in these areas include children and residents who are low-income, lack a high school diploma, are limited English proficient, live in multi-family homes, receive public assistance, and/or are highly mobile. The 2000 Census left an estimated 373,567 people in Texas uncounted. As a result, Texas missed out on approximately $2,913 in federal funds per person – a total loss of over $1 billion over the last decade. This decade, due to population growth, Texas is expected to gain three or four congressional seats in the next redistricting cycle. The difference of one congressional seat for Texas means billions of dollars for our communities. An accurate Census count will give Texas a greater share of the over $400 billion distributed annually to communities across the country for important programs such as school construction, early childhood programs, services to the elderly, job training and infrastructure development. These are funds that Texas needs to create more jobs, build good schools and provide important services for our community.

"An accurate and comprehensive count in the Rio Grande Valley will play a pivotal role in whether or not Texas gains four new congressman," said Rep. Peña. "More importantly a great count for South Texas can mean that one of those new seats will be created in our community. With the continued growth of our population and the expansion of our economy we can not afford to miss out this redistricting cycle.

Partners in the Texas Latino Complete Count Committee include: LULAC, SVREP, WCVI, TACHE, MATT, AFL-CIO, HACU, IDRA, Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops, Texas Media Empowerment Project, Southwest Workers Union, the Rio Grande Guardian, TABE, and the University Leadership Initiative.

Saturday, December 26, 2009