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Ciro Rodriguez to run against Henry Bonilla

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  • Greg Cannon
    Rodriguez to seek District 23 seat Web Posted: 08/09/2006 10:04 PM CDT Greg Jefferson Express-News Staff Writer Former Congressman Ciro Rodriguez stopped
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 11, 2006
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      Rodriguez to seek District 23 seat

      Web Posted: 08/09/2006 10:04 PM CDT

      Greg Jefferson
      Express-News Staff Writer

      Former Congressman Ciro Rodriguez stopped playing coy
      Wednesday night and said he's in the race for U.S.
      Rep. Henry Bonilla's post.

      "We've been looking at the data, and it's doable,"
      Rodriguez said. "It's not going to be easy, but it's
      doable."

      Last week, federal judges redrew the boundaries for
      Congressional District 23, pulling in more Bexar
      County voters — many of them Democrats — and forcing a
      Nov. 7 open election for the seat. That has moved many
      ambitious Democrats to look anew at the district,
      which stretches from San Antonio nearly to El Paso.

      But Rodriguez on Wednesday escaped what could have
      been a strong challenge from a fellow Democrat. Former
      mayoral candidate and former City Councilman Julián
      Castro said he'd opted not to vie for the office.

      "I appreciate the interest in my candidacy," Castro
      said, "but I will not be a candidate in this race."

      He declined further comment, except to say: "If
      there's a race I'm looking forward to, it's the 2009
      mayor's race."

      Bonilla, a San Antonio Republican and seven-term
      incumbent, has already vowed to fight to retain his
      seat, and Rick Bolaños — the Democratic nominee before
      the U.S. Supreme Court-ordered remapping — said he's
      still in the race.

      Among others who said earlier this week they're
      considering mounting campaigns: City Councilman
      Richard Perez; Richard Gambitta, a political scientist
      and director of the Institute for Law and Public
      Affairs at the University of Texas at San Antonio; and
      Albert Uresti, a retired San Antonio Fire Department
      district chief and brother of state Rep. Carlos
      Uresti.

      In the meantime, Rodriguez — who's midway through a
      tour of the far-flung district — said he'll formally
      announce his candidacy Tuesday in San Antonio.

      Monday night, he told several dozen supporters at his
      West Harding Boulevard headquarters that he'd take the
      following week to decide whether to run.

      He said he'll campaign on beefing up education,
      infrastructure and access to health care, as well as
      Bonilla's voting record.

      "I'm asking Republicans, independents and Democrats to
      look at his record, and decide whether he's
      representing the interests of the people of District
      23," he said.

      Rodriguez, a longtime South Sider, represented
      neighboring Congressional District 28 for four terms
      before redistricting set him against Laredo Democrat
      Henry Cuellar. Cuellar defeated him easily in the
      primary last March.

      gjefferson@...://www.mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA0810.02B.castro.1a62728.html
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