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State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez announces run for Congress

On Dec. 8, 2021, Rodriguez officially filed to run for Texas Congressional District 35.

AUSTIN, Texas — State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez (D-Austin) has officially filed to run for Texas Congressional District 35. 

Congressman Lloyd Doggett has represented the district since 2013. However, Doggett is running for the state's new 37th District.

“I’m running because I come from a working-class family that instilled in me a strong belief in the American dream. I’m running because my mother was an attendance clerk at a junior high school and my dad was a crop inspector, working in the fields and they wanted more for me and my sister. I’m running because my parents taught me that if I worked hard, good things would come to me, and they were right. But today, that is not true for too many Texans," Rodriguez said in a press release.

On Nov. 4, Rodriguez filed paperwork to run for the district but said at the time that he was still considering whether to run. On Oct. 19, Rodriguez told KVUE's partners at the Austin American-Statesman that he was "very seriously considering" running for the seat, one he believes should be represented by a Latino.

On Wednesday, Dec. 8, Rodriguez officially filed his candidacy.

"I was the first in my family – even extended family – to go to college," he said in a release. "I’m running because I remember coming home from college, seeing emptier pantries and my parents struggling to make ends meet so that I could afford this opportunity, and no one should have to experience that. Working families deserve a government that not only listens to and works for them, but one with representation from people who grew up working-class and who will use that lived experience to fight for a country where everyone can prosper and succeed no matter their race, gender, or socioeconomic status."

According to his campaign website, Rodriguez was born and raised in McAllen, Texas, and was the first in his family to attend college. He studied government at St. Mary's University in San Antonio and then at the University of Texas at Austin, graduating in 1995. In 2008, he earned his law degree from the UT School of Law.

Rodriguez was first elected to the Texas Legislature in 2002 as the representative for District 51, 80% of which is situated in Congressional District 35, according to his campaign. Prior to his time in the Legislature, he worked as the chief of staff to State Rep. Glen Maxey and served as executive director of the Travis County Democratic Party.

Rodriguez has served on the boards for Austin Habitat for Humanity, Austin Pets Alive!, the Anti-Defamation League's Austin chapter and more. In addition to his elected service, he works as vice president of commercial development for Capstone Title.

Rodriguez is married with two children and lives in East Austin.

Austin City Councilmember Greg Casar, also a Democrat, announced earlier this month that he is also running for Texas Congressional District 35. David Anderson, Jr., James Sasinowski and Claudia Zapata, all Democrats, have filed paperwork to run for the seat as well.

Casar released the following statement after Rodriguez's announcement: 

“Welcome to the race. I am eager for the conversation with voters about who will truly fight and deliver on raising wages, passing Medicare for All, protecting reproductive health care, and fixing our grid.” 

WATCH: Austin Councilmember Greg Casar announces run for Congress

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