Photo by Charles Krupa/AP
Hillary Clinton fired up Texas Democrats during a packed fundraiser Friday hosted by the Harris County Democratic Party. The former senator and presidential candidate spoke to Houstonians about the importance of Texas turning blue in 2020.
“I’ve been saying for a long time that the heart of the Democratic Party is right here in places like Harris County,” Clinton said during her speech, recalling her visit to Houston during the 2016 presidential election.
“I said that even if we didn’t win the state [this] time, we sure could give Republicans a run for their money. And we did,” she said. “Texas saw the biggest gains for Democrats anywhere in the country from 2012 to 2016.”
Clinton pointed to recent victories in the region as proof that Democrats were performing well in a state that, until recently, had been a conservative stronghold. She cited the election of Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, 19 African American judges elected in the county, and Beto O’Rourke’s near-victory.
“So, when I look at Texas I see the future,” Clinton said. “I see a path to drive record turnout in 2020 and if we can do that, you can take back the state house, you can take back the House and maybe even the Senate.”
“We can elect leaders who share our values up and down the ballot and turn this state blue once and for all,” she said. “Because if Democrats win in Texas– wow– we will sweep the nation in 2020.”
Earlier in her speech, Clinton noted Texas has the highest uninsured rate in the country. A recent report said one in four women of child-bearing age had no healthcare in the state, a figure more than twice the national average.
“But instead of leaping into action to address this emergency,” Clinton said, “Republicans in your state legislature are trying, yet again, to defund Planned Parenthood.”
Clinton attended the fundraising event, hosted by the Harris County Democratic Party, along with other high-profile Houston Democrats, including Mayor Sylvester Turner, County Judge Lina Hidalgo, and U.S. Reps. Sylvia Garcia, Al Green, and Sheila Jackson Lee.
Clinton also talked about the recently discovered death of a 10-year-old migrant girl from El Salvador who died in government custody. Her undisclosed passing was the first of six reported deaths of children in government custody, or who had just been released from custody.
“Six children that we know have now died in our government’s custody,” Clinton said. “Why are we only learning about this eight months after the fact. What else is being hidden from the American people?”
Later, she blasted Trump for sharing a doctored video of Nancy Pelosi that makes it appear as if the congresswoman is drunkenly slurring her words.
“The president and his cronies have been running around spreading a doctored video of Nancy Pelosi,” Clinton said. “Now, it is sexist trash, but it also a sign that Trump is running scared.”
The fundraising event aimed to raise $30,000 to help pay for Democratic Party staff in Harris County.