On Monday, Roland Gutierrez, a Democratic state senator from Texas, declared his intention to vie for the U.S. Senate seat in 2024, currently occupied by Republican Senator Ted Cruz. Gutierrez presently serves a South Texas district, encompassing Uvalde, which was rocked by a horrific school shooting at Robb Elementary last year. The tragedy claimed the lives of 19 students and two teachers. Since this horrific incident, Gutierrez has emerged as a prominent voice advocating for tougher gun control measures and has demanded the dismissal of officers who took over an hour to respond to the U.S. school shooting.
In his recently released campaign video, he advocates for reforms to safeguard children in schools, accusing Republicans of avoiding the conversation around steps to avert such devastating incidents in the future.
In the video he states:
“But we saw firsthand how our leaders only cared about maintaining power,” he said in his video. “I’m a proud gun owner and believer in the Second Amendment, but after 19 children and two teachers died, the Republicans wouldn’t even allow us an opportunity to talk about ways to protect our kids.
“It’s why we have to do something now,” he continued. “But what happened in Uvalde wasn’t just about guns, it was about neglect. The neglect of rural Texas. The neglect of the systems in this state that are supposed to keep us safe.”
Gutierrez is not alone in his Democratic challenge against Cruz for the Senate seat; Representative Colin Allred also joined the race in May. This development sets the stage for a fierce Democratic primary between the two. Allred’s campaign, in its initial two months, raised an impressive $6.2 million.
In his campaign video, Gutierrez also lambasted Cruz for his controversial decision in 2021 to travel to Cancun amidst a severe winter storm in Texas that resulted in power outages for millions.