In compiling our 2017 scorecard for the Texas House and Senate we graded 20 individual sponsorships and votes on a total of 17 firearms-related pieces of legislation by more than 180 lawmakers. Only two scored a perfect 100% for their actions during the term.
The first is state Sen. Jose R. Rodriguez, a Democrat not up for reelection until 2020. The other is the recipient of our latest endorsement, Sen. Sylvia Garcia, 2018 candidate for the United States House of Representatives, District 29.
The 8th of 10 children, Garcia has dedicated her life to public service, serving five terms as Director and Presiding Judge of the Houston Municipal System, two terms as Houston City Controller, and was the first Hispanic and first woman elected to the Harris County Commissioner's Court. She joined the state Senate in 2013, serving on the Criminal Justice and Economic Development committees.
Garcia earned her 100% score and place among our LEAPers in part by sponsoring SB 1778, which Texas Gun Sense said would "improve state efforts to educate the public and license holders about recognizing the risk of suicide and safely securing firearms." She was also a reliable pro-regulation vote on NRA-backed legislation like SB 454, HB 1819, and SB 1942.
She is now running for the United States House to succeed retiring US Rep. Gene Green, who recently endorsed her candidacy. Garcia will be involved in a crowded Democratic field, which, coincidentally, includes two other candidates named Garcia - Dominique and Roel - as well as Hector Morales, Pedro Valencia, and Tahir Javed. (No Republican has filed to run in this heavily Democratic district.)
While we are sure all the Democrats running would serve the people of the 29th District well, Sen. Garcia is the best choice to break Houston's distinction as the only Hispanic city without Hispanic representation in Congress, as well as to become the first Hispanic woman from Texas in Congress. Her track record on gun regulation will be a welcome addition to the United States Congress, and we urge all gun sense voters to support her candidacy and follow her career in Washington.
As with all our endorsed candidates we will be updating our blog with news from their campaign as it happens.