Former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez Wins Democratic Nomination for TX Governor

A Hispanic female ex-sheriff has won the Democratic runoff to become the first openly gay and first Latina nominated for governor.

While Lupe Valdez's victory Tuesday breaks barriers, the 70-year-old former Dallas County sheriff faces long odds of ousting Republican Gov. Greg Abbott this fall.

"Together we're going to make it happen -- a stronger and fairer Texas. A tolerant and diverse Texas. A Texas where the everyday person has a voice and a fair shot just as I did," Valdez said late Tuesday night. 

She defeated Andrew White, the son of a former governor who pitched himself as a moderate Democrat in deep-red Texas.

At his campaign watch party in Houston, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew White conceded the race for his party's nomination to Lupe Valdez Tuesday night.

"Lupe has my well wishes to put together a winning campaign," White said. He said he called Valdez and gave her his full support.

The runoff generated little enthusiasm among Democrats. Valdez has struggled to raise money and fumbled some questions on policy. Party activists have also attacked her for cooperating with federal immigration agents as sheriff.

NBC 5 Political Reporter Julie Fine breaks down the November race between incumbent Governor Greg Abbott and Democratic Gubernatorial Nominee Lupe Valdez.
Copyright AP - Associated Press
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