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'We flip Texas, we flip the country’ — AOC stumps for Cisneros, Casar

U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez rallied votes for progressive congressional candidates Jessica Cisneros and Greg Casar in San Antonio on Saturday.

Nearly a year after traveling to Houston to fundraise and distribute supplies to Texans hit hard by the winter storm, the congresswoman said she was back in Texas to recognize the “political infrastructure” Cisneros and Casar built for progressives.

“We’re here to support two incredible game-changing candidates – both, I think, for the Democratic Party, but, frankly, for the country writ large,” Ocasio Cortez said.

The New York Democrat spoke at a Get Out to Vote rally at the Paper Tiger live music venue where they discussed the state of the congressional races in Districts 35 and 28.

“Here’s what’s exciting about the state of Texas, and here’s what's exciting about Greg’s race and Jessica’s race,” she said, “We flip Texas, we flip the country. We flip Texas, we flip the country.”

Related: Where, when and how to vote in the March primary in San Antonio

While Casar is running for an open seat against Rebecca Viagran, Eddie Rodriguez and Carla-Joy Sisco, Cisneros faces Tanya Benavides and a rematch against longtime incumbent Henry Cuellar, who she narrowly lost to in her first congressional campaign two years ago.

“Jessica Cisneros has really shown what is possible – not only here in San Antonio but all the way down South Texas,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “She’s shown that we don’t have to accept status quo politics before we actually fight for change.”

During the rally, the congresswoman noted that there were similarities not only between Cisneros and herself – Cisneros could break Ocasio-Cortez’s record for the youngest woman to be elected into Congress – but Ocasio-Cortez also spoke about the commonalities between the state of Texas and the New York community for which she first ran to represent in Congress.

“...The key was that if we could get young people and people of color to turn out who were progressive and ready to organize that the numbers are already there,” she said. “We don’t need to change a damn thing. We just need to get people out to the ballot box. We get them out the ballot box, we change the state. We change Texas, we change the country.”

Ahead of early voting beginning Monday, the congresswoman and progressive candidates will travel to Austin on Sunday for a Rally for Our Future event where they will discuss the power of Latino and grassroots organizing. The event was scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.

Jiawen Chen
Texas Public Radio
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Sofía Sánchez can be reached at tpr.sofia@gmail.com and on Twitter at @sofiahanalei